The photographic Water Drops project tackles the theme of twinship from a twofold perspective - social and anthropological - freeing itself from the concept of mere reportage in order to examine the themes of identity, of the uniqueness of the individual, and of their relationships with the "other". Intrigued by tales and accounts from Candido Godoi, in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul, the photographer left for the South American town to see with his own eyes what is referred to as "the land of twins". He worked on the project together with the scientist Lavinia Shuler Faccini who has made a research about Candido Godois families. The two sides of this research, the artistic and scientific, thus came together to investigate the social, psychological, and individual situation of this place and of its inhabitants.
Cadido Godoi is a peasant community inhabited by an enclave of families of German and Polish origin, which have one of the highest rates of twin-births (equivalent to 10% of all births, of which 30% are homozygote). As the writer Jorge Camarasa has revealed, it appears that this anomaly dates back to the experiments performed by the German doctor Joseph Mengele who, after the Second World War, carried out a series of studies in the village with the aim of establishing the criteria for creating a superior race of humans.
De Angelis go beyond these suppositions and investigate the evolutionary process of these individuals, which examines the complex creation of self and of personal identity through the recognition of similarities and differences. It is a sort of "educational narrative" which, in De Angelis's photos, does not take place through verbal communication, but through the subtle details of faces, expressions, and looks. For it is in the eyes of the sitters that we see the vibrant energy of a construction of Self as separate and distinct from others and quite unique.
There is a temptation in twins to escape from a typically human condition, which is that of solitude and absence. It is in this perspective that we find the representation of Self as a further possibility for identification. The image restores a sense of uniqueness through the visual experience of the 'other', which is separate from us; and this perception opens up the potential for dialogue with a profound emotional experience. As a means of expression, the image makes it possible to escape from the constraints of the 'double' through the legitimisation of the ego.
Through his lens, De Angelis looks at these pairs of twins, trying to pick out the uniqueness of each individual and of their particular identity, which is reflected but not confused in the image of the other. The format of the photographs, which is based on the "twinship" of the sides of a square, is the ideal setting for this profound, delicate research into the idea of the "double" and into the formation of Self.