"The​ ​Persistence​ ​of​ ​the​ ​Margin" - PhMuseum

"The​ ​Persistence​ ​of​ ​the​ ​Margin"

Melba Arellano

2012 - Ongoing

Mexico City, Mexico

During the six year administration of president Miguel Aleman Velasco (1946-1952), Mexico underwent a profound urban transformation which would continue to unfold uninterruptedly during the following decades. In the 1980’s, the introduction of liberal economic policies led to the implementation of large-scale affordable housing development projects that altered the lifestyles, as well as the material and symbolic relationships of their inhabitants.

Gentrification is the kind side of neoliberalism’s spatial restructuration and has expanded through large portions of Mexico City imposing standardized profitability formulas. However, there are spaces and lifestyles that resist the homogeneity of this program and that place a bet (while unproductive to the eyes of a real estate investor) that prevents this system from being fully implemented. Often, those who resist, fight without a hidden political agenda, the revolutionary spirit of their antagonism operates on affection levels and ways of life alien to the market’s demand for profitability. This rebellion, quiet and silent, is a celebration of the slow passing of time, contemplation, and the value of existence.

"The Persistence of the Margin" is a journey that makes evident the specificity of places and people that because of their affections and inheritance are unable to be incorporated into an ideology that rejects and excludes them. Acknowledging their existence becomes a reminder that an economic model is not infallible and makes it possible to conceive another way of being in this world.

Presented as residues, this photography series is accompanied by a set of objects that 1 have gathered. The objects not only attest to the passing of time, but they also emphasize their own singularity and difference.

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  • The Marquis Cabaret

  • Bartok Tailoring Workshop

  • English Fashion I

  • Eli Beauty Salon

  • Riviere Shoe Shop I

  • Denmark Model workshop

  • Agrarian Affairs Office of México City

  • Candela Dance hall

  • "IPN" Space Museum II

  • Fine Textiles

  • Mikado Travel Agency

  • Riviere Shoe Shop II

  • English Fashion II

  • The Dandy House

  • Violeta Cafeteria

  • Mele Plata Photo studio I

  • Objects in Use