Pavão-Pavãozinho are a group of favelas bordering the south zone of Rio De Janeiro, between the lavish beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema. In 2010, the Military Police infiltrated into the communities and declared an all out war on the drug lords and weapon dealers living there. Consequently, after having violent battles sometimes lasting for days or even weeks, the Military Police set up mobile stations in every major area and corner of the community creating surveillance 24 hours a day, with heavily armored soldier presence. These favelas were 'parcificadas’ or ‘pacified' as the Government have titled it. To the outside world this can seem as a safe environment, a ´savior´ even from the known criminality that goes on, however inside of these communities there is more fear and unease than before. Life in Rio's favelas is lived mostly on the street, where your neighbors are your family, and where solidarity and looking out for one another is second nature. Within the intertwining alleys, filled with hot pavement, aged brick, and endless labyrinths of electrical wires, is a pulse, a constantly present beat. In these streets breathes so much heart, so much energy, vitality, and dignity. This is a series depicting the human side, the heart and soul of these communities.
© Rubén Salgado Escudero