Patricia Conde Galeria booth at Zona MACO,  2014. Photo by Adam Wiseman.


Middle Ages 

Middle Ages is a series of portraits of Mexican medieval recreationists. The work explores the complex processes that create identity in social groups.

Medieval historical recreation is a global occurrence that gained strength in Europe in the 70’s. In Mexico it appeared recently and it is strongly influenced by the local scene that prefers whim and creativity over historical accuracy. The majority of Mexican recreationists are urban youths who make their own costumes and accessories by hand with available or recycled materials.

I am interested in the ways medieval recreation has adapted to the local context and how this relates to the broader process of identity creation. During it’s modification many cultural elements are deformed or substituted, the implicit creativity in this act is the same employed in the construction of an alter ego that could serve a function of escapism or group empowerment in the face of constant economic crisis, violence and social marginalization.

I photographed these individuals with no direction on my part, leaving them to choose the way they would present themselves. Sometimes the ordinary persona is evident, and other times the alter ego comes through but, more often, they appear to be in an awkward middle ground where conflicting layers of self-representation are present.

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