“Atala” Is an investigation about Atala Baquerizo Chiriboga, my great grandmother. She was born in 1909 in Guayaquil, Ecuador. She was a mother of three, Julieta, Susana and Rosa. Julieta and Susana stayed in Ecuador while Atala and Rosa moved to New York in 1958 where they established and where she ultimately died in 2006. Since the relationship between my immediate family and the subject was not close the approach is analytical and methodical.Using the vernacular photography found in their family album I made an analysis of the aesthetic and content patterns present in the photographs juxtaposing the sentimental and factual nature of the medium. The study became a dissection of the photographic material. Based on 76 photographs, 204 crop outs reveal dressing patterns, art and deco, festivities, places, company and religion. The study lead to the following assumptions: The subject had: A significant inclination for flowery patterns both in clothes and decoration. A particular like for roasters and swans. She was present in family celebrations and only two individuals in the photographs have not been confirmed as relatives. We can assume her social life was mainly destined to family. Religious imagery is present though not abundant. She made one trip to Canada. She was fond of kids. There is no evidence of a partner. These are, nevertheless, assumptions only based on the photos that I was given access to. The study highlights the amount of information that can be found in photographs vs the limitation on how much the medium can actually reveal about a person. The study is ultimately about the loss and distance that migration can create in one's family history and dynamics.  The project lives in a binder folder that includes the crop outs, info charts and the correspondent data.

Dressing Patterns




Celebration Cakes

Religious Imagery