While in Chiapas I was introduced to Carlota and the Chiapas Photographic Project. Carlota was generous with her time and we talked about her project which serves women in prison and Maya women facing great challenges in their life. Carlota is a photographer who felt that teaching women to use a camera to express themselves was important to them finding a positive path to tell others about their life experiences.
The purpose as stated in her site, www.chiapasphoto.org, is as follows:
The Chiapas Photography Project (CPP) provides indigenous Maya peoples in Chiapas, Mexico with opportunities for cultural and artistic self-expression through photography. Since 1992, over 300 indigenous men and women from different ethnic groups and religious backgrounds have learned how to use photography as a mode of personal artistic expression, and many have undertaken projects that celebrate and engage members of their communities.
Here are some images and writing from a project participant, Antonia Girón Intzin
The author has written the text in Tseltal•, Spanish and English
Kuxlejal bats’il ants
La vida de la mujer indígena
The life of the indigenous woman
Te antsetike bayel ya’telik te ju’un k’ale ya xachik ta sap ya spasik we’elik yax bajtik ta atel ta sk’alik. Sok ya ch’abajik ta yutil snaik sok ta ch’ulna
Las mujeres tienen mucho trabajo y todos los días se levantan temprano para hacer la comida y luego van a trabajar en el campo. Rezan adentro de sus casas y en la iglesia.
The women have a great deal of work and every day they rise early to prepare food and then they work in the fields and countryside. They pray in their homes and in the church.
Antonia Girón Intzin
etnia tseltal de Chiapas
*Tseltal ethnic group, Chiapas, Mexico