Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti traveled the world for 18 months in search of toys. Not just any toys – he met children and asked them to show their favourite toys or most prized possessions.
He wanted to see if, amidst all the diversity of the world, there was a universality amongst children. If “at their age, they are pretty all much the same; they just want to play”? (Click on the image to meet each child.)
He discovered that truth held wherever he went . Kids do just want to have fun.
What was different from country to country was how the children played. For an hour or so before each shoot – Galimberti would hang out with the kids – interacting casually with them, with their toys. And it was from this snippet of time that the learning came. He discovered that children in richer countries were more possessive with their toys. That it took time before they allowed him access to them.
In poorer countries – the children were different. He found it easier to interact, that trust was established more quickly – that the children were happy to share. Even if there were only two or three toys to share between them.
Galimberti found similarites too: in every country the child’s toys reflected the world into which he had been born.
The family’s economic status and daily life affected the types of toys children preferred. And the protective powers each toy represented for their owner – was shared right across the globe.
(Images found here)