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PORTFOLIO

22.09.2014

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Tradition, drug addiction and religious faith – over a period of two years and armed only with an R6 and an M9, Adriana Zehbrauskas returned time and again to Tepito, a district of Mexico City filled with life and violence. Insights into a hard to access no-go-area.
A policeman walks by the scene of a murder where a man was shot a few hours earlier during the opening of a bar in Tepito
A birthday party in Tepito. Between violence and street battles life for local residents goes on as usual
On october, 4th, is the feast of Francis of Assisi. In Tepito this day is celebrated with traditionell wrestling
In Tepito, wrestling matches are family events
The end of the festivities: dogs roam around between closed carnival stands
One of the biggest festivities in Tepito is the Dia de Santa Muerte, the Day of Holy Death
Pedestrians crowd the packed streets. Faces painted in white pray to a statue of a skeleton called Santa Muerte
As one local says: “If perhaps you have something you don’t want to go to God with, you come here. Say your cousin is in jail. You make an offering and you ask her to help him. It makes no difference to her who you are or what you ask.”
On the Dia de Santa Muerte the undead reign over Tepito
On these days, local residents decorate with special symbols. Decorations with skulls are a favourite
Tattoos with death symbols often serve as a reminder of relatives and friends who have passed away

Adriana Zehbrauskas

Born in 1968 in Brazil, with Lebanese and Lithuanian roots, Zehbrauskas moved to Mexico City a few years ago. She attended a journalism school in Sao Paulo and studied linguistics in Paris. Based today in Mexico, she works primarily for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian and Le Figaro.

Adriana Zehbrauskas
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