Christina de MIDDEL
In 1964 an eccentric schoolteacher named Edward Makuka Nkoloso single-handedly initiated a space programme in Zambia, thereby joining the space race between the USSR and the United States. The programme aimed to put the first African on the moon, but came to an early end due to a lack of funding from either the Zambian Government or the United Nations, and because one of the astronauts, a teenage girl, became pregnant.
Half a century later, Spanish photojournalist Cristina de Middel used this little-known episode of African history as the basis for her book The Afronauts, in which she rebuilds the story and adapts it to her personal imagery. De Middel's surreal pictures of an African space programme contain elephants, colourful spacesuits and elaborate headdresses, and create a fictional documentation that is funny, striking and thought-provoking.
― Statement from publisher