I grew up barefoot in the desert surrounded by seas of saguaros and mountain ranges that loomed over my town. The desert's aridity and high temperatures made monsoons and the sweet smell of creosote a blessing. Nevertheless, I knew to take to higher ground when the rain turned to a flash flood drowning everyone and everything in its path. In the desert we learn to count our blessings as this land has the authority to make us bend to its will. We are simply observers to the sheer power of this land, and when lightning storms came with no rain we watched as our mountains were set ablaze for forty-nine days. If one thing can be said, let it be this: this land is unforgiving and wild in its nature.
One would believe the saguaros and the mountains would serve as a warning for this land's hostility, but alas their ethereal beauty is romanticized by adventurers and dreamers alike. Heading westward has deeply embedded itself into American culture with the promise of finding something greater amongst the divine landscape. Ultimately, there exists a paradoxical relationship between the unwelcoming nature of the desert and the deserts nature of welcoming the transient soul. With that said, this collection works to showcase the untamed nature of the American Southwest and humans’ ongoing attempt to domesticate it.