My fascination with Mexico, the country of my maternal ancestry began in early childhood. Although my father was a gringo and I was born and lived in Texas, our daily home life on the Mexican border was solidly defined by Mexican culture and Catholicism. Frequent travel throughout Mexico was a family tradition that became a constant in my personal life. In the late 70's, while on a group expedition to collect and photograph rare orchids in the jungles of southern Mexico, I began to recognize the great variation among Mexican indigenous folk cultures; each dominion was represented by a visually rich, original style that radiated it's identity. This epiphany led me to begin exploring Mexico's cultural fabric, ultimately becoming an obsessive quest resulting in my Essence of Mexico Project, in which I photographed the important festivals of each of Mexico's more than 60 indigenous folk cultures as they existed in the final decade of the millennium.

Today, I am working concurrently on several projects related to my continued photographic endeavors. The images in this portfolio are the facet of my work, which I consider to be experimental. CORAZON FUSILADO, curated from the EMBRUJO MEXICANO COLLECTION, is the product of my frequent downtime, countless hours and days holed up in a shabby little apartment in Houston, waiting for the next spurt of funding that would allow me to resume my work in the field. My method of creating the images was to manually superimpose transparencies in an attempt to discover juxtaposed realities. When I began experimenting with this technique, I was amazed to find that the subjects in the images could be made to bleed, burn, and actually transmit emotion. Indeed, I began to measure the success of an image by the degree of my analeptic response to it; which is to say, by the excitement that it evoked in me - a racing heart, accelerated breathing and sometimes even gooseflesh.

Many of the images presented here are dark. My fascination with the superstitious side of folk culture, with its pantheon of supernatural allies and demons, is no doubt responsible. The images address universal human issues such as the realities of wounds, blood, fear, the magic inherent in superstition, religion and religious fanaticism, sacrifice, political despotism and injustice, war, pestilence, death and bizarre social phenomena. Some are meant to satirically caricaturize by exploring notions of non-fixed morality and ethics. to be arbitrated by the viewer.

As most of the images were shot in Mexico City over the last 25 years, I had initially meant to address its bleak contemporary urban realities. however, as I continue to discover juxtaposed visual and contextual scenarios, I realize that Mexico City has now become a portal through which to observe these universal issues. Ultimately, these images are a commentary on the "signs of the times"; the apocalyptic realities faced by the world during the Postmodern Age.

George O. Jackson, Jr.
Austin, Texas
May 24, 2003

copyright George O. Jackson, Jr .2003
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