The Tibetan word bardo refers to the transitional state between death and rebirth, the existence between two lives on earth. In terms of migration, bardo can be used to refer to the transitional period of a migrant’s life. What happens to migrants who live in a permanent state of transition -- stuck in a country unintended to call home? What happens to a person’s identity when he or she steps out of one culture but is not accepted into another? Bardo focuses on those who live between; unwelcome in their host country and unable to return home.
Thousands of migrants leave home toward the vision of a better life in Europe, and often what stands between the migrant and his or her destination is the Mediterranean Sea. The Eastern and Western Mediterranean routes continue to dominate the European media's coverage of illegal immigration. Undocumented migrants enter the EU member states via the Eastern Mediterranean route through Greece, and the Western Mediterranean route, via Northern Morocco into Spain. Stymied in their attempts and often met with racial stereotyping and violence, journeys are brought to a halt in unexpected towns scattered along the borders of the Mediterranean Sea. Some can literally see their destination. Because of the negative stigmas surrounding immigration, migrants face considerable levels of xenophobia in the cities where they temporarily settle. Through images taken along the Mediterranean in Morocco and Greece, Bardo explores the emotional space of the migrant – the tension between nation and identity, between dream and reality.