By Katy Cowan
In his ongoing series Sale Stalls, German photographer Simon Koy travels the world to explore what stalls might look like in different cultures. From India, Peru and Albania to China, Iran and Cuba, he has so far spent more than 10 years documenting the many street markets and shops that he’s come across. And it’s a quest that he claims to be never-ending.
He explains: “Stalls are everywhere and can tell you a lot about a country. In many cases, they’re completely improvised – just a pop-up type shop in the middle of nowhere, selling all kinds of unusual things. It can be very amusing and heartwarming, and I love to meet the people who run them. Sure, not everyone I meet is friendly, but how I’m welcomed reveals a lot more about the local culture than you’d expect. Sometimes, it can be sad… for example, in Cuba, they often sell things which would otherwise be thrown away in Europe. It really highlights the depth of poverty in some parts of the world.”
Koy adds: “When I take these pictures, people are usually very friendly and happy for me to photograph them, but they don’t understand why. For them, it’s nothing special. For me, it means everything and really helps to paint a clearer picture of how countries are so different.”
To discover more about the Munich-based photographer, visit his website at www.simonkoy.de.