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Barbershop | Andrei Iliescu

Barbershop | Andrei Iliescu.

“Barbershop” is an ongoing project that started unexpectedly, without a previous plan and formed in time, during my various trips throughout the world. I took one of the first photos in Cojimar, Cuba in 2006, but my idea of seeking and documenting barbers has turned to life in 2008 in Sharjah, AED where I have found a “barber boulevard”. Wherever I went, I diligently followed this subject ever since. I even asked people and researched for as much as I could. With time I began to realize that, the barbershops mean much more than a place where people come to fix or trim their beards. It is a part of the community culture’s quintessence; they say a lot about the people’s lives: the nature of human spirit.

I specifically looked for small old barbershops – those you can find mostly in further and poorer countries. There is where I felt the community’s pulse and I discover the true “spiritus loci”. I also looked for historical barbershops that were elegant and you can still find similar ones in Europe. The scent of these cosmopolitan barbershops transcends time and their ravishing atmosphere still holds the remains of the characters that have passed by there.

Anywhere the roads have taken me, the barbershop is there like a genuine establishment that is never missing and cannot be absent. Whether it is rich or poor, the man has had the same unquenchable need to be proud and groomed – this is part of human nature itself. Going to the barbershop is a ritual that fulfill billion people on the planet and the idea of cutting, clipping and trimming of hair or beard as adornment of own appearance over time is universal and transcends time.