The blood and the rain.

  • Dates
    2016 - Ongoing
  • Author
  • Topics Fine Art, Documentary
  • Location Mexico, Mexico

The blood and the rain.(La sangue y la Lluvia)Peticiones de Lluvia en la montaña de Guerrero, Mexico.

In Guerrero, Mexico there are communities which still perform pre-hispanic ceremonies. They are ancestral Meso-Americans who see both blood and rain as sacred.The blood and the rain, sought a way to document the rain petition rituals and sacrifices which they perform, but do not allow to be photographed. By combining photography with drawing, we found a way to explore the layers of the physical and metaphysical in these rituals without exposing or violating them.

For us it is very important to represent, in a symbolic way, the relationship that exists between people, their gods, and nature. We wanted to talk about the close bond that is maintained between them and how the rain ritual is more than an event or a performance, it is a philosophy of life that holds in balance the cycles of sacred forces such as wind, sun, rain, earth. Where, through sacrifice and pain, blood is gratefully given to the earth – the generator of life.

When we visited this sacred place, we though about faith and what might drive a person to climb a mountain, to cross it regardless of the weather, pain, or fatigue. And we thought about what makes some members of the community of Zitlala offer their pain and their blood to give something back to the earth: the immense sacred being.

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Man- Cloud This image is used symbolically to represent when the wind comes in the shape of a vulture they bring the clouds to the rainy season; beliefs of the Nahuas comunities from Zitlala Guerrero. Fireworks for a rain petition in the Zitlala Hill on May 2nd 2017 For the indigenous communities of Guerrero, the Holy Cross is invoked as our most holy mother, conceptions that have no relation to the Christian cross, to the dead, or to the crucifixion. It is a cross of water, that is why they dress it and decorate it blue, feed it to bring rain and protect crops. For the Nahua, Mixtec and Tlapaneco peoples, the cross is an agrarian cross, it is the representation of the tree of life, symbolizing the Nahuatl cosmogonic accounts that gave rise to the four deities, identified with four colors: red-Tezcatlipoca, blue -Tlaloc, white-Quetzalcoatl and black-Huitzilopochtli. The cross is the symbol of the four cardinal points and the four elements of life: Earth, air, fire and water. Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - Woman in the mountain of GuerreroA woman inside home in the community of Tixtla Guerrero.
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Woman in the mountain of Guerrero A woman inside home in the community of Tixtla Guerrero.

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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The turkey and the mist. It is common that the people from the mountains of Guerrero offers turkeys in the Peticiones de Lluvia (rain petitions) in the early days of May as sacrifice to the rain to come.

© Yael Martínez - A group of women from the community of Zitlala cooking tamales for the oferrings.
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A group of women from the community of Zitlala cooking tamales for the oferrings.

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Ofrenda a la cruz (oferring to the cross) In contemporary Indigenous religion the presence of the ancient gods is perceived. For the indigenous communities of Guerrero, the Holy Cross is invoked as our most holy mother, conceptions that have no relation to the Christian cross, to the dead, or to the crucifixion. It is a cross of water, that is why they dress it and decorate it blue, feed it to bring rain and protect crops. Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Procesion From the myth of the creation of the Aztecs the goddess Tlaltecuhtli asked for hearts to feed upon and refused to bear fruit if they were not provided. after that belief the community of Zitlala make a procession of people in the night of 1st of May in the Cruzco hill in the southern state of Guerrero. They climb the Cruzco to bring the crosses down to the river to perform a rain petition ritual beside it. Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Landscape Landscape with feathers, men, musicians and roots of trees. this image is a representation about the the connexion between man and earth about nahua tradition of rain petitions that take place on the firts week of May in Zitlala Guerrero. In the image you can see how a group of men become oneself with the roots of the earth; Is an act of offering to ask for a good rainy season Intervened photography Guerrero México 2016.

© Yael Martínez - The tigerPortrait and tiger masks from Zitlala Guerrero. Intervened photography
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The tiger Portrait and tiger masks from Zitlala Guerrero. Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - OfferingA man in the Xomislo Hill offering for the rains .Tixtla Guerrero.Intervened photography
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Offering A man in the Xomislo Hill offering for the rains .Tixtla Guerrero.Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Cave Some birds are thrown into caves as sacrifices in the Peticiones de Lluvia (shower requests).Cave on the hill of oztotempan. For the Nahuatl, Mixteca or Tlapanecas communities, the caves represent sacred sites because it is believed that within them the water is always present while in the communities the water only appears in the rainy season. That is why offerings are made to ask for a good rainy season.Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - SacrificeA turkey is sacrificed as an offering in the cruzco Hill. Tuesday April 25, 2017.
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Sacrifice A turkey is sacrificed as an offering in the cruzco Hill. Tuesday April 25, 2017.

© Yael Martínez - Blue waterIn the mountain of Guerrero the communities develops rain petitions in the river, caves, or a top of a mountain.
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Blue water In the mountain of Guerrero the communities develops rain petitions in the river, caves, or a top of a mountain.

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Pelea de tigres (Tigers fight) Tigers fight. Zitlala Guerrero Mexico. Every 5th of May the tigers of zitlala fight to each other to perform an ancestral ritual. this ritual is a rain petition. In their beliefs they offer their blood to the gods to obtein rain; a drop of blood it´s equal to a drop of water. Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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New fire Offering to the Cross and the gods of the wind on the Cruzco hill on May 2nd 2017. Zitlala Guerrero. Tuesday May 2, 2017.

© Yael Martínez - Rain petition on the Cruzco Hill.Intervened photography.
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Rain petition on the Cruzco Hill. Intervened photography.

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Zitlala tiger in the cave of Cruzco Hill. A tiger fighter getting out of the holy cave after oferring to the cross in the Cruzco hill.

© Yael Martínez - Virgen of GuadalupeImage of a virgen of Guadalupe
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Virgen of Guadalupe Image of a virgen of Guadalupe

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Cosmic serpents before the myth of creation. This image is used symbolically to represent an episode of the myth of the creation of the Aztecs in which Quetzalcoatl and Tezcatlipoca, in the form of cosmic serpents, caught the body of Tlaltecuhtli and split it in half, thus creating heaven and earth. A man building a castillo ( handmade fireworks) in the mountain of Guerrero.Intervened photography

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Chants A group of zitlala tigers perform canticles inside a cave (sacred space) on the top of the hill of Cruzco on May 2nd 2017. After a long trip about 25 miles on foot Through narrow, winding, and treacherous mountain terrain. Zitlala Guerrero.

© Yael Martínez - Image from the The blood and the rain. photography project
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Goats In the comunities of Tlapa Guerrero sacrifice two goats in the top of the mountain to make a offering of the rain petition.Intervened photography

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