Guatemala & France

In 1997, I had the good fortune to travel to Comalapa, Guatemala, with a group from H.O.M.E., Inc. (Homeworkers Organized for More Employment) in Orland, Maine. For many years, H.O.M.E. was a sanctuary to many Guatemalan families who were escaping from their military-ruled government. But due to the Peace Accord in '97 the families returned to their homeland and in order to help the impoverished Myan Indians and to educate others, H.O.M.E. established a cultural exchange program.

Through the program, it was a great privilege to be accepted immediately into a Mayan Indian home—to live there, and eat the indigenous food. In becoming part of the community, I experienced a closeness that is impossible to discover as a tourist. I was able to photograph freely without spending months and years establishing a relationship. I never was made to feel as an outsider, and therefore could explore beyond the obvious, telling the story of the everyday rhythm of Mayan family life.