At the river basin of the Papaloapan river in Veracruz, Mexico, the people have built a story, an economy and a very peculiar culture. Their lives are both determined and threatened by the river’s annual swelling. Nevertheless, their roots withstand the nature and resist forgetting.
En la Tierra Baja is a photographic narrative based on the concept of the family album in order to explore the relationship between the community of Tlacotalpan and the river, not only as a way of living but also as a form of Resistance. The yearly rise of the river poses a historical contradiction: on one hand, it is a means of transport, an economic source, a reason to belong and an originator of traditions; but on the other, it is an unstoppable force of nature that threatens to kill everything. However, there’s no river capable of erasing the intangible, the permanent.
This is a story about the conservation and preservation of a memory. A story about an the inherent necessity to belong to our environment. This is the story of a town whose existence is essential in the understanding of life in this region—a town that refuses to vanish and that prevails by telling itself: “the river gives but it also takes.”