Livia Corona Benjamin

b. 1979 in Mexico
Lives and works in the US

In the series Two Million Homes for Mexico, Livia Corona Benjamin explores multiple developments of low-income housing across Mexico. Over the past decade, almost seven million nearly identical homes have been built in remote agrarian areas across Mexico. To encounter these developments by land, air or even satellite imagery triggers a strange sensation. These are not the neighbourhoods of a ‘home sweet home’ dream fulfilled, but are ubiquitous grids of ecological and social intervention on a scale and with repercussions that are difficult to grasp. In neighbourhoods of 1,000 to 120,000 houses, endless rows of  homes with a 34-40 square-metre floor plan have reduced the building of communities to the mere construction of dormitory housing. There are nearly no public amenities such as schools, parks or transportation systems. There are few commercial structures such as banks or groceries. Yet the demand for these low-income homes continues to increase and developers continue to provide them with extreme efficiency. Through images, films and interviews, Livia Corona Benjamin looks for the space between promises and their fulfilment. In her photographs of multiple developments across the country, she considers the rapid redefinition of Mexican ‘small town’ life and the sudden transformation of the Mexican ecological and social landscape: ‘This type of urbanization, now prevalent in our country, marks a profound change in our collective experience as citizens of a broader world. With this long-term project I explore the effects of these neighborhoods on culture and society, and their role in forming the perspective of the younger generations who live in these neighbourhoods through key formative years.’

Living Room to Bedroom Conversion. Merida, Mexico. Livia Corona 2011