The Border

For much of its life, the Rio Grande was used and crossed without consequence, though over the last century the river has become an increasingly fragile line of political demarcation. Early European colonists claimed land and resources in the name of royalty and religion, treaties were passed dividing the land at the river, and in the last ten years Border Patrol agents have been doubled in draconian attempts to control smuggling and immigration. A tranquil and ecologically dynamic natural environment has become a complex social landscape: what was once a river is now a border. This selection of photographs is one chapter in an ongoing and long-term exploration of the border between the United States and Mexico, focusing on South and West Texas.