Untitled 8, from the series El Jardín de Juegos
El Jardín de Juegos is a series of images that investigates representations of loss in the urban landscape. I made the work in an abandoned playground adjacent to the city’s largest cemetery between 2002 and 2003, after I moved from New York to Mexico City. Intuitively drawn to the space by the dilapidated play structures, overgrown vegetation and the pervasive sensation of absence, I used my 4x5 camera as a tool with which to explore loss, a practice that dates back to the medium’s invention with its use for post-mortem and mourning photography and a subject that resonates with a related early life experience. Loss, as Roland Barthes posited in Camera Lucida, is inherent in the photographic medium. For Barthes, photography was a sign of absence, not presence.