There is a photograph on the wall in Justine’s house of her and her husband in a digitally created manicured garden that is foreign to Nicaragua. Standing with their arms around each other, the text ‘Juntos para siempre,’ or ‘Together forever,’ hovers above their heads, printed in an elaborate script on the crest of a waterfall.
Photographs like this are popular in the homes of Potreillos, a small community in rural Nicaragua. As a result of Photoshop, a man is photographed with his deceased brother. Even though a husband works in Miami, he and his wife’s images permanently gaze outward from a digitally created heart. The same landscape appears in house after house: A Costa Rican plantation, lushly landscaped with a multi-floor hacienda as it’s focal point.
This difference between hope and reality also surfaces in day-to-day life. The path of one’s life can seem predestined – a young girl’s first boyfriend becomes her husband, a father’s farm becomes his son’s. Together forever truly means forever. However, Potreillos is a community in transition in which there is a desire for economic development and higher education. This tension is what guided me as I made portraits.
Jackie is a photographer, filmmaker, and educator. Her work documents the relationships people have to their histories and the natural environment.
Jackie has worked as a teaching assistant and lead instructor at The International Center of Photography, the 92nd Street Y, PhotoManhattan, New York University, Amigos de las Américas, The Santa Fe Photographic Workshops, and Santa Fe Community College. She has taught arts and crafts, architectural history, filmmaking, black and white darkroom photography, and digital photography to youth and adults. She also has experience teaching photography as a tool for empowerment and teaching in Spanish.
Jackie graduated from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2009 with a BFA in Photography & Imaging. She lives and works in Santa Fe, NM.
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