Skip to content

America Unfiltered: Portraits Of A Nation

America Unfiltered

Directed by Horacio Marquinez and Kirill Myltsev

My bookAmerica Unfiltered: Portraits of A Nationfeatures over 100 of my favorite photographs from our documentary film and my upcoming gallery exhibition.

Preface Of America Unfiltered: portraits Of A Nation

At the height of the pandemic, two immigrant filmmakers journeyed across the United States uncovering an unfiltered, unflinching portrait  of America. 

In an era of mindless scrolling and stylized selfies, Horacio Marquínez and Kirill Myltsev showcase searing, unpolished black and white  portraits and intimate conversations of people across the United States. Aware of the photographer’s gaze, the stark, Horacio’s black and  white composition pares the images back to their most essential character, free from artifice and distraction revealing their unvarnished,  vulnerable truth. 

What if we could better relate to one another and heal our nation’s divides by seeing that we share so much beneath the surface? 

Seeking to build empathy amidst a fractured country and uncertain future, America Unfiltered sets out on a cross country journey to  photograph people and record their stories about how it feels to live in America today. Arising from a series of raw and emotional  encounters touching on topics from politics to race to love to immigration, this book presents an unvarnished vision of our shared humanity  and engenders hope for our country’s next chapter. 

Two native Americans photographed in New Mexico during the production of America Unfiltered by Horacio Marquinez

At the height of the Summer of 2020, we landed in Gallup, NM empty streets. An eerie desert silence mixed with the constant whistle and screeching metal on metal wheels and track of the never-ending present locomotive. Here I encountered these two Native American gentlemen. We never spoke a word. I spent about two hours walking around the deserted downtown taking it all in.

America Unfiltered: Early COVID-19 Pandemic

Early 2020 was a moment of intensity and emotion in New York City, both because of the COVID pandemic and its hold on NYC as well as the social protests that were cropping up all throughout the city.

America Unfiltered: Social Protests

I was moved by the black women's march for their intensity, commitment and discipline to accomplish peaceful protests. I also met a mother and daughter in Harlem who had recently arrived from Somalia. The mother spoke of her feelings of relief that she is in America during these uncertain times.

young Asian American interviewed during the production of America Unfiltered

“I don’t feel like an American, even though I was born here. I am constantly questioning where I am from and  comments that I speak “good” English. I would like to go somewhere else, and try to find a home  somewhere else” Excerpt from our interview in a coffeeshop in Larchmont, Los Angeles, CA

America Unfiltered: Interviews With Veterans

Lovely couple that Horacio Marquinez met during the production of America Unfiltered

This couple appeared genuinely friendly and curious about us in the Route 66 diner in Kingman, AZ. The gentleman is a war veteran and served in Panama, where I am from, in the 60’s. He made a good effort to practice his Spanish with me, which I appreciated very much.

War veteran filmed using a gun by Horacio Marquinez

Chris is a gun shop owner. After a long conversation at his shop, he insisted on taking us out to an improvised shooting range. He wanted us to experience shooting big guns. He shared with us that he had a complicated relationship with his father, an alcoholic, but that he learned everything about guns from him as well; that it was the one thing that connected them.

America Unfiltered: Remembering George Floyd & BLM Protests

Social protects filmed by cinematographer Horacio Marquinez
America Unfiltered Portraits Of A Nation photography by Horacio Marquinez
Young family affected by protests and riots during the production of America Unfiltered documentary by Horacio Marquinez

“Everyone called him Q, he thought it was easier; Quandavier was the name I chose for him. I am the living truth that your child is my child.  I am 1700 black mothers, I am George Floyd’s mother… This is a face of a hurting mother who is trying to save our sons out there.” 

Excerpt for our interview with Mrs. Woods, Quadavier’s mother, Q was allegedly a victim of police brutality in Atlanta, GA 

America Unfiltered: Christmas And New Years

Christmas celebration portrait from the documentary called America Unfiltered by Horacio Marquinez
Michael from Horacio Marquinez' America Unfiltered Documentary

Michael,  is a war veteran, suffers from PTSD.  He also built his own cabin in the outskirts of Haleyville, AL in the Appalachian mountains. He and his wife  invited us over for a Christmas celebration. We were able to capture a snapshot of the men of the family on one side of the cabin. 

portrait of The Imperial Inn by cinematographer Horacio Marquinez during the production of his documentary America Unfiltered
People at The Imperial Inn motel during the production of America Unfiltered by Horacio Marquinez

We spent New Year’s eve at the Imperial Inn in Haleyville, AL and met a very interesting group of people. The present owners  were happy to pose in front of their hotel.

Arising from a series of raw and emotional encounters touching on topics from politics and race to love and immigration, America Unfiltered paints an unvarnished vision of our shared humanity. Coming soon