Early this year I took a trip to Tapachula, Mexico which is about 30 miles north of Mexico's border with Guatemala in the state of Chiapas. I've passed through Tapachula a few times and it appealed to my general obsession with border regions so I wanted to return to spend some more time there.
Tapachula serves as a sort of stopping point for migrants after an often long journey through south and central America where people regroup and wait for more funding, make plans on where and how to go further north, or try to obtain asylum status in Mexico. While there I met people from Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua, India, Nigeria, Nepal, Korea, China, Cuba, Barbados, amongst others. The people I met had varying situations they left at home but they all shared a common goal to make a better life for themselves and their loved ones. I spent lots of time with the locals who serve as historians to the ever changing city of Tapachula and often had experiences to share of their own journeys north.
I want to continue this project and consider these photos as establishing shots for more work to come in this and other border regions.
On a brief personal note, I have decided to continue my studies towards a BFA in photography with the eventual goal of an MFA. I've enrolled in CALARTS as a third year student and Maia and I will be making the move to Los Angeles this summer. In the process of the move I'll be trying to move lots of prints to make space and to raise some money so stay tuned here for details.
As always, thanks for reading!
This is in Coatepeque, Guatemala, a town I spent quite a bit of time in a few years working on the Gone Missing documentary. I went back for a day to give some copies of the film to some of the people that helped and appeared in it and just happened to catch this fire breather moment.
Thanks for reading!