The Flower Women

Wednesday, 08 January 2014 22:57 Written by Eunice Adorno

I travelled to the Mennonite settlements in Nuevo Ideal, Durango to meet women from the most conservative communities in Mexico.

Fraum Blaum means "flower women" in Low German. Flowers are a pathway into their lives  and can be found everywhere, in their names and the gardens, houses and landscapes they showed me.

This colorful, secret and fascinating universe became the object of this documentary project, as these women let me into these everyday, intimate spaces. After spending a long period isolated there, those spaces eventually seemed ordinary and simple. This coexistence with the Mennonite women revealed the passions, memories, secrets, friendship, pleasure and enjoyment that they hide below their puritanical clothes and reserved gaze on the outside world.

The Mennonite women who opened their homes and lives to me showed me their unusual way of life, which many regard as incomprehensible and an “obstinate” desire to conserve the traditional culture that they brought here in 1920. Indeed, President Álvaro Obregón granted them land in the north (Chihuahua, Durango, and Zacatecas), which they still own.

I realized during each trip that I was seeking, in many senses, my own history and identity. As I looked at those Mennonite women, they were reciprocally looking at me. I allowed myself to be gazed at, and shared those moments of light they gave me.

Read 2731 times Last modified on Thursday, 27 February 2014 13:40