Photo gallery: Meet the locals of Mallorca and uncover its authentic side

In this edited extract from the photo portrait book 'Faces of Mallorca', atmospheric pictures and heartfelt accounts seek to reveal the stories of the locals themselves...

4 mins

Looking beyond the 'sun, sea and sand' stereotype of Mallorca, authors Mark Julian Edwards and Stephanie Schulz have sought to present a more authentic image of the popular Mediterranean island in their compelling photo portrait book Faces of Mallorca. Here, Wanderlust peek inside the pages to meet some of the locals and uncover their real stories. 

 

 

The nuns of Santa Clara: In love with Jesus

The nuns of Santa Clara (Mark Julian Edwards)

The nuns of Santa Clara (Mark Julian Edwards)

“The calling is like falling in love with someone. Nobody has told you to fall in love with that person, yet the feeling grows inside of you and becomes more and more intense, and suddenly you know: ’Wow, this is exactly where I belong.’

“Sometimes people say this is like a prison. These people don’t know about the spiritual liberty we feel, how the simplicity of our life conditions makes us incredibly free inside. For us, it is more as if the people outside the monastery were in jail, oppressed by other types of suffering, challenges and overwhelming daily life.”

“Sometimes, when I pray, I think that someone is out there right now who is about to make a bad life decision. And then I feel that my prayer might change their mind somehow, that maybe we are able to reach these people and make a difference.”

The nuns of Santa Clara (Mark Julian Edwards)

The nuns of Santa Clara (Mark Julian Edwards)

 

 

 

 

The closed order of the Poor Sisters of Santa Clara, a monastery in the historic part of Palma, dates back to the thirteenth century. The two sisters we spoke to wouldn’t reveal any personal data like age or names, as they were speaking on behalf of their community. They only have contact with the outside world on very rare occasions, which made having the opportunity to talk to them even more special to. The nuns are famous for their homemade pastry, which they sell, without ever being seen, through a wooden pass-through.

Toni Nadal: The achiever

“The most important thing in this life is to try to mejorar, improve a bit each day.

“People often ask me why I was so tough with Rafael. It was because I wanted him to be the very best – for himself. Sometimes I might have said things that were a bit harsh, of course, but in the end, I was very friendly outside the tennis court.

“The German poet Goethe once said: ’Talent develops in quiet, alone; character is sharpened in the torrent of the world’ – and this is true. I always knew that I wanted Rafael – and now my kids – to have a big, strong character. When everything goes well, life is easy, but you need to be good when things go wrong. This is not easy, and then it is all about your character."

Toni Nadal (Mark Julian Edwards)

Toni Nadal (Mark Julian Edwards)

Toni Nadal (Mark Julian Edwards)

Toni Nadal (Mark Julian Edwards)

Toni Nadal (Mark Julian Edwards)

Toni Nadal (Mark Julian Edwards)

 

 

 

 

Toni Nadal is the uncle and former tennis coach of Rafael Nadal. He is the most successful coach in the history of tennis in terms of Grand Slam titles. With Toni, Rafael won sixteen of his Grand Slam championships. He is also the head of the Rafa Nadal Academy in Manacor.

Antònia Muntaner: The Lamb Lady

Antònia Muntaner (Mark Julian Edwards)

Antònia Muntaner (Mark Julian Edwards)

“I am eighty-three years old, and I have been living and cooking here at the restaurant for almost all of my life, together with my family. Now, I am retired but I still help out every once in a while. It can be a bit lonely up here in the mountains, but I like it.”

Antònia Muntaner (Mark Julian Edwards)

Antònia Muntaner (Mark Julian Edwards)

 

 

 

 

 

Antònia Muntaner was the cook at the legendary lamb restaurant Es Verger, high up in the mountains of Alaró.

Joan Aguiló: The Street Artist

Joan Aguiló (Mark Julian Edwards)

Joan Aguiló (Mark Julian Edwards)

Joan Aguiló (Mark Julian Edwards)

Joan Aguiló (Mark Julian Edwards)

“I discovered street art in Berlin and was immediately fascinated. When I came back here, I thought it would be easy to find other street artists in Mallorca, but this scene barely existed. I am kind of proud of the fact that I helped to bring this culture to the island.

“I still have that bit of adrenaline, back from the past, when I just painted the walls without permission. Now the owners of walls ask me to paint them, but years ago it was very different; you had to paint and rush away before you got caught.

“I try to paint real moments of Mallorquín daily life. These are the things which define me as a person – the small things connected to Mallorca. The island lost its identity for a while. Now, many people miss the past and are a bit nostalgic for it. In part, that may be why so many people like my paintings.

“Outside on the street, it is interesting to see how people walking by like to share their opinions on my work. They even offer advice … and sometimes a cup of coffee.”

 

Joan Aguiló (Mark Julian Edwards)

Joan Aguiló (Mark Julian Edwards)

 

 

 

 

Joan Aguiló is a street artist and was born in Sa Pobla. His huge murals can be found all over the island. They are easily recognisable as his style is very unique, typically featuring Mallorquín childhood experiences

Andreu GenestraThe Chef

Andreu Genestra (Mark Julian Edwards)

Andreu Genestra (Mark Julian Edwards)

Andreu Genestra (Mark Julian Edwards)

Andreu Genestra (Mark Julian Edwards)

“I am proud of being Mallorquín and I want us all to be proud to share our story with the rest of the world. My way of doing this is through food.

“My earliest childhood memories go back to being in the kitchen with my mother and grandmother, who used to prepare typical Mallorquín dishes.

“The best way of getting to know a place is to go where the locals go. I can show you great places where you can have simple but amazing Mallorquín food. Let’s go to Sa Pobla; I’ll introduce you to my friend Jaume at Casa Miss.

“There are so many things that I love about Mallorca, but what really makes me feel at home are the smells of the island. When you enter the church at Lluc, when you walk into the Mercat de l’Olivar; the scent of the salt when you are next to the sea. Also, the sensation of being in a traditional bar on Christmas Day, watching the old folks playing bingo and listening to the language I grew up with. These tiny things make me smile.”

Andreu Genestra (Mark Julian Edwards)

Andreu Genestra (Mark Julian Edwards)

 

 

 

Andreu Genestra was born in Inca and is a Michelin-starred chef. His restaurants Aromata, Bala Roja and Andreu Genestra are amongst the best restaurants in Spain.

Faces of Mallorca

Mark Julian Edward’s photos have been exhibited in Mallorca and the UK and have appeared in numerous publications. In his and his co-writer, Stephanie Schulz’s book, the atmospheric pictures and heartfelt accounts seek to reveal the stories of the locals themselves. 

“Faces of Mallorca takes us back to the roots of the island and its people. At the same time, it shows us the most up-to-date Mallorca, its most famous personalities and the ordinary citizens who make up our beautiful society. It is a magnificent piece of work as it also conveys the future that awaits us." Andreu Serra, Tourism Minister for Mallorca

"Faces of Mallorca transports you into island life through stunning images and moving stories of its people." Tony Wheeler, Creator of the Lonely Planet

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