Kelcey Parker Ervick

How Cortés Conquered Mexico

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Artist Statement

In 1521, Hernán Cortés and his men captured the Aztec emperor Cuauhtémoc and conquered the Aztec Empire, claiming Mexico for Spain. In modern times, gringo tourists continue to assume dominion over Mexico’s cities and beaches. “How Cortés Conquered Mexico” features a series of vintage postcards, primarily from the 1950s-80s, sent by American tourists in Mexico to friends and family in the U.S. I have altered the postcards with found phrases from the 1937 travel book, Un Viaje a traves de los Estados Unidos by J. Hamilton (which I found in a used bookstore in Mexico City this summer), to tell an alternate history that links imperialism and tourism.

 
 

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Kelcey Parker Ervick is the award-winning author of three books. Her new book, The Bitter Life of Božena Němcová (Rose Metal Press), is a hybrid work of biography, memoir, and visual art. Her previous works of fiction include Liliane’s Balcony: A Novella of Fallingwater (Rose Metal Press) and For Sale By Owner (Kore Press). Her stories, essays, and mixed-media narratives have appeared or are forthcoming in Colorado Review, Passages North, Ilanot Review, Notre Dame Review, Third Coast, Image, Western Humanities Review, Bellingham Review, and other journals. A recipient of grants from the Indiana Arts Commission and the Sustainable Arts Foundation, she teaches at Indiana University South Bend.