In 2009, French photographer Iris Della Roca left the refined streets of Paris to take up residency in the unpacified favela of Rochinha in Rio de Janeiro.
Through her work with a local NGO, she came to realise how the children of the favela were viewed with prejudice and suspicion by outsiders. She began shooting portraits with the kids, giving them the opportunity to present themselves how they wished to be seen – as kings, princesses, top models, movie stars and astronauts.
Upon returning to Paris, she realised children from the gritty suburb of Clichy-Sous-Bois faced the same negative perceptions and shot portraits with local kids in the same way as those shot in Rio – and found they shared the same dreams.
The emerging project, As the king is not humble, may the humble be king returns the dignity and pride denied these children by wider society due to the circumstances of their social status.