Los Jardines de Mexico.
Photographs by Janelle Lynch.
Radius Books, Santa Fe, 2011. 64 pp., 37 color illustrations, 11x14".
The photographs in Los Jardine de Meixco explore themes related to the life cycle and representations thereof in the urban and rural landscape. Made between 2002-2007, and comprised of four series - three from Mexico City and one from Chiapas - each project investigates, if not embraces, a specific facet of existence: loss, death, regeneration, and life.
Los Jardines de México begins with El Jardín de Juegos (Mexico City, 2002-2003), the first project Janelle Lynch made upon her move to Mexico City, where she lived for three years. Made with a 4×5 inch camera, the images, void of people, as are all of the works in the book, show the relics of a children’s playground conquered by nature and neglect.
The Donde Andaba series (Mexico City, 2005), made with a 6x7cm format camera, follows and represents a progression from the prior series in both content and form. The images juxtapose wild plant life with architecture and explore the subject of the persistence of life despite its ambient conditions.
Akna, the Mayan goddess of birth and fertility, is also believed to be a guardian saint. The photographs in this series, Akna (Chiapas, 2006), Lynch’s first with an 8×10 inch camera, are portraits of anthropomorphized tree stumps in a nature reserve, which investigate the theme of regeneration.
Lynch made the final series in the book, La Fosa Común (Mexico City, 2007), also with an 8×10 inch camera, in the functioning, century-old common grave, centrally located within the city. The photographs of vegetation in various stages of the life cycle, coupled with subtle suggestions of the setting, further the exploration of notions of loss and death that El Jardín de Juegos began in 2002-2003, while simultaneously celebrating life and its intricate beauty.
About the Limited Edition
The limited edition of 40 includes a signed copy of the book and two 8x10 inch contact C-prints.