Rosalind Solomon's photography has taken her to South America, Nepal and India. In these areas she has documented religious practices and other aspects of "unsophisticated" lifestyles virtually untouched by the twentieth century. Through her images we see one artist's intimate vision of the culture of the "other."
In 1979 Solomon spent a considerable amount of time in Guatemala, capturing images of native lifestyles and religious rituals. Her images of a village witchdoctor and a rural burial are documentation of her preoccupation with religious rites and how other cultures deal with death.
Burial, Solola Guatemala, 1979, documents a rural burial, depicting a casket surrounded by village women. The dead woman lies with a few small possessions, and a liter of Pepsi-Cola.
The jarring placement of a liter of Pepsi-Cola as an offering in a traditional ritual brings us back to the fact that the burial is occurring in the twentieth century. Solomon's perspective of this event is a humanistic one, not idealized, but truthful.
Solomon's photograph Witchdoctor, Chichicastenango Guatemala, 1979 (at the top of the page) is another enigmatic but highly spiritual image. Here, Solomon is able to capture the witchdoctor in the midst of a ceremony, though the viewer is left to wonder about the nature of the ritual.
All images are copyright by the artist or by UC Regents, 1999, all rights reserved.