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Alejandro Cartagena May 10, 2012

Posted by Geoffrey Hiller in Mexico.
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Ciudad Juárez, Mexico 2009

Alejandro Cartagena (b. 1977 Dominican Republic) lives in Monterrey, Mexico. His work has been exhibited and published internationally, and is in several public and private collections in Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Italy, and the United States. He is the recipient of several major national grants, numerous honorable mentions and acquisition prizes in Mexico and abroad. In 2009 Alejandro won the Critical Mass Book Award, and was named one of PDN´s 30 emerging photographers. He was also a finalist for the Aperture Portfolio Prize, selected as an “International Discovery” at the Houston FOTOFEST,  a featured artist at the Lishui International Photography Festival in Lishui China and the Contact Festival in Toronto. He is currently on the Faculty of Visual Arts at the University of Nuevo Leon and is represented by Circuit Gallery in Toronto.

About the Photograph:

“This image is the last photograph of my Suburbia Mexicana book. It’s project dealing with the Mexican suburbanization of the past decade and how peoples aspirations of home ownership have transformed the landscape in the periphery and other urban structures of Mexican cities. I developed the work in five different stages which broadly addressed causes and effects of these new suburbs. After doing the portraits for the project I decided to do a picture of the houses. I felt that it could be a great point of comparison between the images of these houses when they are new and what happens to them over a period of three or four years. I used to work in that suburb years ago and saw the subtle changes occur and once I starting taking pictures I felt I could represent my thoughts on this “process of progress”. So in the book you start with almost pristine looking suburbs where everything is brightly painted and clean and you finish with houses that are not houses anymore; a sort of humanization of architecture.”

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