by Maleeha Sambur
I first came across this photo by Catalan photographer Xavier Miserachs five years ago, via a friend who saw it at a gallery show during the New York Flamenco Festival, and it remains one of my favorite images to date. Shot in Barcelona in 1962, its subject, the barefoot, gypsy flamenco legend Antoñita "La Singla", is something of an enigma. I couldn't find much information about her life other than that she was born deaf and mute. I did, however, come across a few videos of her riveting performances. I found myself transfixed by her fierce expressiveness and powerful energy (not to mention her polka dot tie-front blouse and high-waisted pants combo), and wanted to join the spectators in shouting, "Singla!"