All Photographs © Irina Werning
These public schools in the Andes Mountains of Argentina are true frontier outposts: the few scattered windows looking out to the civilized world that are available in the far off northwest corner of the country, home of the indigenous Kollas.
The boys and girls that attend them are isolated in their communities and cut off from the urban civilization of an otherwise fast-pace developing country. Through teachers and books they get an imperfect glimpse of that remote urban culture. For some, emigration to the cities is a future option but for many their future is tied to their land, their families and their ancestral routes. A few very powerful routines dominate the daily existence of these students: football for boys and long hair for girls function as status symbols replacing those consuming goods and articles that dominate teenage life in the cities of the globalized world.