Cowboy and Daughter Madera Portrait-3.jp

The Spirit of Mexico

Gallery Show Spring 2021

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In January 2021, Photographer Michael orso traveled across Mexican with an emerging liquor brand to document the most renowned and obscure artisanal alcohol distilleries in the country in an effort to capture  The Spirit of Mexico.

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Rising at the crack of dawn, Michael and the team traversed through Chihuahua, Durango, and Oaxaca

three different states in three different regions of the country with three different topographic landscapes in order to locate the countries most infamous master distillers.

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While every landscape was unique and individual, there were a few common themes, namely the vastness of the land, the warmth of unfiltered sunlight, the blistering yellows of the earth, the deep and rich blues of the sky, and the symbols of catholicism that is ubiquitous across Mexican culture. Scroll the gallery below to see.

Chapel Side of Road Chihuahua
Chapel Side of Road Chihuahua

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Sapioris Landscape
Sapioris Landscape

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Rock and Moon
Rock and Moon

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Chapel Side of Road Chihuahua
Chapel Side of Road Chihuahua

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After driving as much as 8-hours per day, we arrived at small distilleries in even smaller towns where we got to meet not only the master distillers, but also their children, their spouses, their parents, and their friends. It quickly became clear that cultivating mezcal and sotol is about more than producing a good, it is about family, heritage, tradition, craftsmanship, and, of course, grueling hands-on labor.

Madera Throw Sotol Plant
Madera Throw Sotol Plant

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Pitchfork Madera
Pitchfork Madera

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Agave Field Busy-2
Agave Field Busy-2

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Madera Throw Sotol Plant
Madera Throw Sotol Plant

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