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Destino: Central American migration to the U.S.

Drawn to the frontier edginess and melancholy of the region, I began photographing along the U.S. – Mexico border in 2000, shortly after reading Cormac McCarthy’s, The Crossing. The novel begins with a boy finding a wolf caught in a trap on his family’s Arizona ranch. He treks across the Sierra Madres into Mexico to return the wolf to her native land. The story has every narrative element that’s captivated my imagination since I was about eight years old: a cast of characters that includes sinners, saints, and pariahs, an epic journey across a hostile wilderness, a bond between boy and dog, a multitude of dangers, themes of salvation and redemption. In 2009, I began photographing undocumented Central American migrants who use the network of freight trains lurching across Mexico in an attempt to enter the United States and begin a new life. Destino, which means both destination and destiny in Spanish is an intimate portrayal of this odyssey, and some of the hardships migrants endure during the epic journey across Mexico.

A slightly different edit of this work-in-progress was recently published on Burn Magazine. I plan on making another trip to Mexico in January to continue work on the project.

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