Border Cantos is the result of a collaboration between photographer Richard Misrach and composer and performer Guillermo Galindo. The two have been working together to create pieces that both document and transform the artifacts of migration along the US/Mexico border. Misrach has been photographing the two-thousand mile border between the U.S. and Mexico since 2004, with increased focus since 2009—the latest installation in his ongoing series Desert Cantos, a multi-faceted approach to the study of place and man’s complex relationship to it. Misrach and Galindo have been working together to create pieces that both document and transform the artifacts of migration. Using water bottles, clothing, backpacks, Border Patrol “drag tires,” spent shotgun shells, ladders, and sections of the border wall itself, most of which were collected by Misrach, Galindo fashions instruments to be performed as unique sound-generating devices. He also imagines graphic musical scores, many of which also use Misrach’s photographs as points of departure.
A unique melding of the artist as documentarian and interpreter, the book will include several suites of photographs drawn from a number of distinct series, or Cantos—some made with a large-format camera as well as an iPhone. The book will also contain a compilation of two dozen sculpture-instruments, graphic scores, instrument designs, and links to videos of performances by Galindo on the image-inspired instruments.