A Distiller at Work.jpg

The Spirit of Mexico

A Photography Exhibition

 

By

Michael Orso

Project Statement

If there is one thing guaranteed in life in an industrialized country, it is the ability to endlessly and instantly consume. But we are not just consumers, we have become connoisseurs of exotic products we know nothing about. We ask our friends, "How have you not heard about this?" when few of us take the time to learn about it.

Mexican distilled spirits are one of the hottest categories in the liquor industry, and American celebrities from George Clooney to Kendall Jenner to The Rock have capitalized on this trend. While this has meant big business for big and small distilleries alike, it has also come at the sacrifice of the very cultures that the spirits are rooted in because of how these influencers inject their own personal brands into the products that they are promoting.

The Spirit of Mexico photography exhibition is a journey through small distilleries and cultivation farms across Mexico. Ultimately, the exhibition comments on American consumerist culture by juxtaposing an American voyeuristic photographic lens in the visual style of an advertiser with the vibrance of the Mexican countryside and the open, yet weary artisans who have reaped the benefits of the newfound obsession with Mexican distilled spirits.

Cowboy Hat Cigarette Self Portrait michael_edited.jpg