After learning his trade in the world of free-fighting and hip-hop, Samuel Cueto gradually switched to film photography following the advice of photographer Armen Djerrahian.
As a street portraitist, Samuel Cueto has focused his work on the left behind, the invisible ones who live far away from city centres. Coming from the working class neighborhoods of this "forgotten" France, Samuel Cueto pays tribute to his fellow human beings whom no one seems to pay attention to anymore.
Samuel Cueto fell in love with Thailand. He went there six times between 2014 and 2016 to make his emblematic series of photographs that resulted in his first major exhibition "City of Smiles" at the Argentic Gallery. His work was also presented at the Rencontres Photographiques d'Arles in 2016 and at the 193 Gallery in 2018. Mainly made in the ghettos of Bangkok, Pattaya and Phuket, his photographs are far from postcard landscapes: local gangs, traffickers of all kinds, prostitutes, live in another reality, yet a few minutes from the heavenly beaches. Samuel Cueto pays tribute to these marginalized people, to their fragility, to their humanity.
Between 2014 and 2018, Samuel Cueto also travelled to India and Senegal to capture authentic portraits of authentic people. While many photographers have tried to capture the world of the ghettos and suburbs without succeeding in going beyond the exoticism of safari photography, Samuel Cueto is not afraid to get his hands dirty and show the dirty and grimy underside of our society.