Untitled - Fomento Cultural Banamex



Untitled - Fomento Cultural Banamex
First edition digital, 2015
All rights reserved © FOMENTO CULTURAL BANAMEX, A. C.
Madero 17, Centro, 06000 México, D.F.
ISBN: 978-607-7612-85-8
Partial or total reproduction, storage, communication, or distribution
of the contents of the present work by direct or indirect means in any
format or medium currently known or not yet known is prohibited
without the prior express permission in writing of the copyright holders.
In the Everyday Life of the People of Mexico, Rosa Casanova
Mexico: Weighing Images, Sergio Raúl Arroyo
Gallery of Images
Index of Photographers
Banco Nacional de México celebrates 130 years of promoting growth and development in Mexico. It has been a long journey
in which the bank’s integral commitment to Mexico has been the defining mark of the institution’s identity.
Banamex, in addition to maintaining its position as the leader in financial services in Mexico for thirteen
decades, has consolidated its role as an enterprise with a strong social commitment, undertaking actions in diverse
fields ranging from spreading awareness of culture and promoting education, to supporting communities affected
by natural disasters, spearheading initiatives to care for the environment, and promoting sustainable development.
Considerable human and economic resources have been channeled into this work, which has become institutionalized
through areas that include Fomento Cultural, Fomento Social, Fomento Ecológico, Voluntariado, and Educación
Financiera to foster culture, social programs, environmental conservation, volunteer work, and education for young
people on finance.
A constant in the bank’s history has been its ongoing interest in exploring and analyzing the country’s
economic, political, and social environment, as well as better understanding the unique features of Mexican culture and
national identity.
In consonance with this mission, the bank organized the first edition of the photographic competition
Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans in 2009. Its objective was to assemble a living portrait of our country and its people,
depicting contemporary Mexico in all of its geographic, social, and cultural diversity. The result was a multicultural
mosaic that enabled us to gather a complex variety of images of Mexico today, its land, its people, customs, beliefs,
ritual celebrations, and traditions.
The second edition of Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans continued to enrich and document our visual holdings on the subject that matters the most to us and that is our greatest inspiration: Mexico
In the name of Banco Nacional de México, I express my thanks to all of the competitors for their participation. At the same time, I would like to extend our most sincere congratulations to those whose images were selected
to form part of the collection, and especially to the thirty-nine participants who were singled out in the competition’s
categories. The selection, made by an international world-class jury, clearly represents a body of photographs of
exceptional quality.
For Banamex it is a pleasure to share the results of this competition with our clients and with Mexico. Over
the last 130 years we have shown that we are an institution that has evolved to best serve our public, and we will
continue to do so for many more years as a model of financial services and corporate commitment in Mexico.
Manuel Medina Mora
Chairman, Board of Directors
Grupo Financiero Banamex
Banco Nacional de México
Photography is an everyday, inclusive, and free means of expression that makes it possible to display a creative streak and to
explore, discover, and share our surroundings through a wide range of perspectives.
The first edition of the photo competition Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans, held in 2009, was one of a
kind. Through digital media, the general public—without any restrictions on nationality—was invited to participate by
submitting their best digital images of contemporary Mexico.
In 2014, to commemorate our 130th anniversary, we held the second edition of this competition. This
made it possible to contrast the images from both events, enriching a photo collection that traces the evolution of
our country and its inhabitants as well as distinctive elements in our values and perceptions that have survived or
At a time when new technologies have modified the way we communicate, we again advertised the
event primarily through social networks and electronic media. The cybernetic propagation of messages and details
concerning the competition was vital for effective dissemination to more than two million users; we had more than
eight million views with the hashtag #mxdelosmx. As a result, in only two short months, we received more than 52
thousand photographs, which, together with the more than 28 thousand from the first edition, totaled more than
80 thousand images that allow us to see a complex and evocative display of Mexico today.
An international jury of widely renowned professionals in the field of photography and the visual arts
selected the thirty-nine images that were awarded prizes in the competition and the best thousand images to form
part of the collection Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II, from which the images in this book were selected and which
will also be available in a digital version. At the same time, this collection is the basis for a series of exhibitions that will
be presented in cultural, academic, and social venues throughout Mexico, beginning in our Casas de Cultura in Mérida,
San Miguel de Allende, and Durango.
One of the distinctive features that we have valued the most in these competitions is that it has given
us the opportunity to draw closer to the people to better understand their vision and their impressions of our shared
surroundings. This proximity is a vital dimension of our ongoing effort to more fully comprehend Mexican society in
order to fulfill our holistic commitment to the country, as we have done for the last 130 years. It is one more element
that explains why Banamex is an institution with deep roots in Mexico.
Ernesto Torres Cantú
Chief Executive Officer
Grupo Financiero Banamex
Banco Nacional de México
In the Everyday Life of the People of Mexico
Who are we Mexicans represented in the group of photo-
Mexico City predominate (if only for its size), there are
graphs submitted to the competition El México de los mex-
also photos of Chiapas, Jalisco, the State of Mexico, and
icanos II-Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II? What are we
Veracruz that reflect the specific natural, ethnic, social,
looking at and where are we standing? These are some of
and economic characteristics that shape us. And although
the questions that crop up as we peruse the images select-
diversity is nowadays a political buzzword in recognizing
ed for this volume. An initiative sponsored by Banco Nacio-
the rights of others, it is also true that it forms part of our
nal de México, since its first call for submissions in 2009,
contemporary reality.
this competition has prompted the response of hundreds of
The starting point is the conviction that
aficionado photographers as well as professionals. They
amidst all of this diversity it is still possible to identify fea-
were invited to bear in mind certain rules governing the
tures that support a shared identity. The results seem to
competition this year, “Through images of landscape, peo-
reinforce this idea: there is no doubt about belonging
ple, customs, values, culture and activities that will shape
to a nationality, but there are indications of the different
tomorrow’s Mexico, we wish to compose a portrait that
ways of life throughout Mexican territory. This shared iden-
demonstrates the enormous diversity, complexity and vital-
tity is not expressed through heroic gestures, sites, or
ity of Mexican society in the early years of the 21st century.”
monuments with a strong historical charge, an approach
The vast range of subjects is reflected in the thirty-six priz-
often deployed until recent times; instead it arises primar-
es, honorable mentions, and other forms of recognition
ily from moments and scenes from daily life. This is one
that were awarded to participants.
of the aspects promoted by social networks, at the same
The name of the competition suggests that
the objective is to outline the profile of the reality of con-
time that it has been privileged in contemporary photography, especially that of a documentary nature.
temporary Mexico through the way that the people inter-
Meanwhile, vitality has been fueled by our
pret or appropriate the idea of nationhood. It is worth ex-
society’s optimistic vision, an attitude of openness to a
amining the guidelines, because they clearly affected the
future that it seems will be better. This is the overriding
orientation of the photographic submissions. Keywords
tone, as we shall see when we survey the images. Even
refer to diversity and vitality. Let us begin by noting that
in photos that show loneliness, poverty, or abandon-
plurality starts from Mexico’s geography: reviewing the
ment, an underlying current suggests the possibility of
places photographed, almost all the states in the country
change in these conditions, almost always from the sheer
are present, and although, as to be expected, images of
act of visualizing and describing them in the texts that
accompany the photographs. They show another face of
reflects this proliferation: more than 52 thousand images
the country, given the absence of brutal representations
were submitted in the two months that the call for imag-
of violence that mark our present. Its absence is notice-
es was open. It also indicates the vigor of electronic media,
able, but perhaps more importantly we can recognize
because they played a fundamental role in publicizing
our features in these other realities and experiences that
the competition.
hold future promise.
Curiously, many of the thematic and compositional parameters established by traditional photogra-
Photography and Technology
phy for more than 170 years remain intact. What’s more,
Before teasing out the contents and meanings, let’s talk
the preference for black and white images—considered
about the photographs. Although it might sound pedestri-
“artistic”—has remained in place or has been reborn. This
an to say this, the analysis of this body of images must be-
might explain its predominance over color images on
gin with the acknowledgment that we live in a world bom-
this occasion. In fact, some photos were sent in two ver-
barded by images. The democratic access that Kodak
sions, perhaps to improve the odds of winning one of the
promised in 1888 with its slogan “You press the button,
generous prizes if not in one category, then in another.
we do the rest” has mushroomed. Now it is the user who
The team—coordinated by Michael Calder-
presses the button and does the rest. Photos are produced
wood—demonstrated its capacity to handle the influx of
by cameras and a wide range of mobile devices with the aid
images, which was especially abundant in the final days.
of programs that make it easy to compose, manipulate, and
His task was to make a pre-selection to eliminate images
share images on the Internet, or print them at home, which
that did not fulfill the stipulated technical or subject matter
means technological progress has modified our way of see-
requirements for each of the award categories. Then the
ing and above all our way of relating to images.
jury, composed of twelve international experts in diverse
In the most recent call for submissions the
fields related to the image, performed the next stage of
requirements were simple and encouraged participation.
the selection. We had to judge the works submitted on the
The technical characteristics were viable for almost any-
basis of “artistic merit, originality, subject [and] style.”
one interested in photography: electronic (jpg) format
The jury was composed of photographers Michael Calder-
at a minimum resolution of 72 dpi in a file size no smaller
wood, Juan Coronel Rivera, Flor Garduño, Graciela Iturbide,
than 3.0 MB. Also specified were the number of images
Teresa Siza, and Alejandro Tijerina; Alejandro Castellanos
(five) that could be submitted per participant, the time
and Rosa Casanova, historians who specialize in photog-
frame (from 2008 to the present), not having won any
raphy; urban planner José Luis Cortés; Ellen Harris, an
other competition with the image and not having used it
expert in art and museums; Cándida Fernández de Cal­
for commercial purposes, and the cession of rights to
derón, general director of Fomento Cultural Banamex;
the photos to form part of the Fomento Cultural Bana-
and designer Eduardo Zapata.
mex collection.
Since its inception, photography was one way
The Photographers
of leaving a record of the major moments in people’s
Given this panorama it would be interesting to know who
public or private life. Now it is part of every instant and
shot the photographs, their training, and age. However,
scene in our everyday life. The number of images received
these questions remained unanswered, because they were
there are sites run by professional photographers, tutori-
not part of the information requested, which was circum-
als, blogs, and so forth, in short an almost infinite network
scribed exclusively to name and contact information
of connections that promote contact with famous images
(e-mail, address, and phone number), to avoid inhibiting
reiterated in advertising. And so, they contribute to “ref-
erences” to well-known photos and photographers that
Let’s look at what we actually know. The
2009 competition provided the experience of Alejandro
are perhaps involuntarily added to the visual memory of
the user, who is not even aware of their source.
Tijerina, who was awarded the main prize. Until that time
The command of technique arises from prac-
he was a serious aficionado with aspirations, but he worked
tice, Internet comments and tutorials. These tools are
in another field; after winning the prize he decided to
within the reach of anyone who has access to electronic
buy the camera that he had always dreamed of, leave his
devices (which is still a minority in Mexico). Then it is up to
profession, and devote himself fulltime to photography.
the imagination to produce interesting framing and com-
This life story shows the potential quality of work by ama­
position that transmit the concept of the planned objec-
teur photographers who do not dedicate themselves full-
tive. Texts accompanying photos often influence how the
time to the art form.
image is read, reinforcing the text/image relationship,
The 2014 competition, just as the earlier
edition, was open to professionals and amateurs alike, as
which is inseparable in photojournalism. In this case the
perspective might reside in the desire to tell a story.
well as to “all individuals of legal age, from Mexico or
abroad.” Based on the first edition, we can say that pro-
A Bit of History
fessional photographers, especially young creators, par-
Since the start of the twentieth century, photography com-
ticipated, but the vast majority were aficionados, for
petitions became more frequent. Illustrated serial publica-
whom photography was not a way of life, but rather an
tions, such as El Mundo Ilustrado (1894), El Universal
expression—sometimes among many others—of their
Ilustrado (1917), and Todo (1933), to mention only a few,
preferences and curiosity. The winning submissions were
opened their pages to photos taken by readers (who were
mostly from male contributors, although that did not
not always amateurs), filling their pages with children’s por-
necessarily reflect the panorama of professional practice
traits, charming young ladies, and landscapes that ideally
in the field. However, there was no indication of a clear
came from all corners of Mexico. As a medium still regarded
inclination for certain themes along gender lines.
as innovative and testimonial, it served multiple purposes:
Even though most participants probably
to illustrate with images free of charge, to promote the
lacked formal photography training, social networks and
magazine, and at times to proudly proclaim that it was giv-
specialized websites provided a visual education. We
ing space to its readers.
should not forget that every day millions of photos are
Photography clubs also sponsored competi-
uploaded on the Internet, which results in an avalanche
tions among their members. The work of the Club Fotográ­
of unoriginal, immediately disposable images added by
fico de México (Mexican Photographic Club), established
users who merely want to share their momentary expe-
in 1949, stands out in this regard. It carried out ongoing
rience with friends and strangers alike. We don’t need to
work through discussions of images and by giving awards
look for them, because we can’t avoid them. In addition,
in its periodical exhibitions. A number of creators who
stood out on the twentieth-century photography scene
regional production. They might seem to be remote an-
came from these two worlds.
tecedents, but it is important to recall that time was need-
Closer to the situation today, it is interesting
to recall the growth triggered by the inclusion of photog-
ed for the general knowledge and experience garnered
to be spread in the public’s awareness and to take root.
raphy awards given in the Sección Bienal de Gráfica
The proliferation of workshops, courses, cer-
(Graphics Biennial Section) of the Salón Nacional de Ar-
tificate courses, colloquia, encounters, and publications
tes Plásticas (National Salon of Visual Arts) of 1979. The
throughout Mexico has given rise to a culture of photog-
following year saw Photography Biennials, sponsored by
raphy, complemented by the experience of the Internet.
the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes (National Institute
This panorama has fueled the training of photographers
of Fine Arts) and the Consejo Mexicano de Fotografía
with solid knowledge.
(Mexican Photography Council). Finally, it was split into
two events: in 1993 the Bienal de Fotoperiodismo (Photo-
Testimony and Representation
journalism Biennial) and in 1994 the Bienal de Foto­
Most of the images were accompanied by a brief descrip-
grafía (Photography Biennial), following the inception of
tion or commentary that complemented or reiterated the
the photography center Centro de la Imagen that year.
image’s message, but that on occasions changed the mean-
Contemporary photography was promoted
ing. The texts reinforced the intention of saying something,
by the Consejo Mexicano de Fotografía, which was estab-
which was tied to the possible meanings or the webs of in-
lished in 1977, later by the Centro de la Imagen. In addi-
terpretation established at the nexus of the creator’s will,
tion the study and dissemination of historical images
the image, and what the viewer brought to the act of see-
expanded through the Fototeca Nacional (National Pho-
ing the image.
to Archive) and the Sistema Nacional de Fototecas (Na-
As mentioned earlier, the competition guide-
tional Photo Archives System) of the Instituto Nacional
lines listed several thematic categories, although the main
de Antropología e Historia (National Institute of Anthro-
prize would be for “the best photograph,” while the
pology and History)—founded in 1976 and 1994, respec-
awards for black and white and color had no bearing on
tively—and spread to many parts of the country. It gave
the subject matter. The other prizes were intended to ful-
rise to competitions, exhibitions, and spaces to display
fill certain objectives: the jury prize had to show a cultural
work, promoted by local cultural institutions, sometimes
community; the family award, a domestic scene; the so-
in conjunction with federal agencies such as the Consejo
cial commitment prize, an activity that benefited the
Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes (National Council for
community; the children’s category, an everyday context;
Culture and the Arts), Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes,
contemporary Mexico, an avant garde image; that of Fo-
Fondo Nacional para la Cultura and las Artes (National
mento Cultural Banamex, folk art in the making; and that
Fund for Culture and the Arts), and the Instituto Nacion-
of Fomento Ecológico Banamex, the conservation of en-
al de Antropología e Historia. Photography Month in
vironmental patrimony.
Mérida and Xalapa, the competitions organized by the
Contemporary daily life is the backdrop for
Fototeca de Nuevo León (Nuevo León Photo Archive),
most of the images, disrupting the solemn tone frequent-
and the Festival Fotovisión (Photovision Festival) in San
ly attached to certain subjects. This is the context for the
Luis Potosí have become firmly ensconced, stimulating
Jury Prize awarded to: Close to the Land, a “Documentary
project that explores fragments of culture and life on
nous world. In the optimistic vision of Mexico, the represen-
ranches on the southern Baja California peninsula,” as
tation of work was one of the subjects most developed
photographer Elizabeth Moreno Damm explained, a “his-
in its many dimensions. One of them was the prize granted
tory that is gradually being lost.” In twenty shots, this
by Fomento Cultural Banamex, which has a long trajectory
young award-winning photographer constructs a narra-
in the field of folk art, in its collaboration with communi-
tive, the effectiveness of which derives from the handling
ties of artisans, who are generally indigenous. It has
of a restrained color scheme, appropriate for the project’s
promoted the reappraisal of folk art and fostered re-
objectives. In what appear to be casual shots, the photos
spect for traditions in the use of materials, forms, work
survey the community based on portraits that play with
methods, at the same time that it has helped to integrate
framing. We participate in spaces for adult and child labor,
designs more in line with contemporary tastes and ways
the privacy of preparing a bride, the dreams of children
of life. The prizes awarded by this organization focus on
under the eye of the tired grandmother, or the place of
the work process.
saints, children at play, and important sites. It is a group
The prize in this category went to profes-
not set in nostalgia, but rather in the life of these Mexi-
sional photographer Annick Donkers. Craftswoman shows
cans living in the northern part of the country.
a Huichol woman, absorbed in her handwork, in her home,
Travel photography seems to occupy many
which shows the signs of a modern house. The light fil-
of the scenes or views submitted: visual notes captured
tering through the window first falls on the work materi-
in an instant of the awe inspired by nature, architecture,
als and then reveals a shot fortuitous in appearance, but
an activity, or scene, or curiosity stirred by the unfamiliar.
that is the result of an exchange between the photogra-
The perspective from which each photo is constructed
pher and the artisan. At first sight, Iván Felipe Galíndez
reflects the optic of bearing witness, documenting, or
Ortegón’s Maya Weaver Working Jipi Palm, which was
representing. Other threads cross the weave of the im-
awarded Honorable Mention, seems to be more tradi-
age: work or professions, rituality that is sometimes trans-
tional. The first thing we can see is an elderly man who is
formed into a fiesta or that on occasions expresses reli-
taking advantage of the light coming through the door
gious fervor, monuments or icons, education, nature, with
of his traditional dwelling to weave: immediately the gaze
the contradictions inherent to our times, or idealized land-
shifts to an ambiguous scene in the room in the back-
scape, indigenous people in traditional hieratic composi-
ground where a person in a hammock is rocking back and
tions or permeated with modernity, gender and portrai-
forth. There are two scenes to be deciphered: it is almost
ture. Some of these subjects have been ongoing in the
as if it came from a dream, but which is real? Honorable
history of photography in Mexico; others, such as diverse
Mention in the General category was given to Paola Cora­
forms of sexuality or the concern for the environment,
saniti for Women Potters, which shows an artisan in an
have been added in recent years.
unconventional pose: dressed in her traditional garb, her
back is to us as she prepares her figures. The text and shot
Trade or Work?
suggest it is documentary work part of a larger project.
Work has been understood as a paid urban activity, while
Another series of images situates occupa-
the performance of a trade or occupation is often tinged
tions in a context of exaltation, a process achieved through
with a romantic view of traditional culture or the indige-
the skillful handling of light that ennobles the work scene.
This is the case of Fernando Arce Sánchez’s Agave Es-
where a cloth with the Virgin of Guadalupe is tacked to
sences, Verónica Ceme Cabrera’s Mexico’s Bread, Rosa
the wall. This work by award-winning photographer Jorge
María Santos Espinosa’s Fishermen, and the scene con-
López Viera (Giorgio Viera) won Second Prize in the Black
structed by Juan Pablo Cardona Medina, The Enchant-
and White category. With a sober documentary style, he
ment of the Everyday.
confronts us with the eyes of five children in the unhap-
Fulvio Eccardi’s documentary work, Chicle-
pily famed town of Acteal; we can only speculate on the
harvesting Community in the Maya Rainforest of Cam­
meaning that the “patron saint of Mexico” might have for
peche and Quintana Roo, records the process of chicle
them. Pilgrim, by photographer Nelly Angélica Acosta
production. It starts with the natural world where this ac-
Díaz from Puebla who was awarded Third Prize in Color,
tivity is performed; nature is one of the favorite subjects
also shows an image of the dark-skinned Virgin of Gua-
of this photographer, who offers a photo essay to defend
dalupe. In this case the religious reference is clear: the
the region’s environment. We can see workers, their fami­
icon covers the body of a young man riding a bicycle on
lies, harvesting chicle, and its processing. For the quality
a pilgrimage to the Basilica of Guadalupe.
and rigor of his images, he was awarded Honorable Mention in the Jury Prize category.
References to archaeological sites are virtually absent, as is the monumentality that accompanies
architectural and sculptural work. By all indications, Mexi­
The Absence of Icons and Monumentality
cans today do not wish to make grand gestures, but in-
After the lavish celebrations of 2010 commemorating
stead prefer to focus on the familiarity of the human
the bicentennial of Independence and the centennial
scale in view of the fierce violence that confronts us on a
of the Revolution, a proliferation of images alluding to
daily basis.
these events might have been expected. This was not the
case. There are some references, such as the work by Abel
Rituality, Ceremony, or Religious Belief
Gastón Saldaña Tejeda, awarded Second Prize in the Color
Another privileged facet explored in the search for iden-
category. He deconstructed the image of the historic
tity is connected to ceremonies, which mark the life of
niños héroes (boy heroes) by having a group of “children
significant sectors of Mexico’s population, although they
of trash collectors” brandish the national flag, an allusion
have begun to shed some of their religious and ethnic sig-
to Joe Rosenthal’s renowned photo Raising the Flag on
nificance. The Banamex 130 Years Prize portrays the way
Iwo Jima (1945), a World War II icon. The boys laugh in
that calalá, a traditional dance of some towns in Chiapas
the middle of a gray patio with trash, scraggly trees, and
linked to agricultural rites, is still celebrated. The shot taken
a splendid sky, looking at something or someone beyond
by photojournalist Jesús Lorenzo Hernández Hernández
our field of vision. A disturbing and playful reflection on
places jaguars on the urban asphalt, a contemporary con-
nationalism and the revolutionary struggles that the
text that seems stripped of the original rite, but that none-
photographer has been exploring at least since 2010
theless brings citizens together.
and with which he has won other forms of recognition.
Often the lens focused on details alluding to
In Rural Life a peculiar symmetry is estab-
a fiesta or rite, such as the strands of butterfly cocoons
lished with the group of children who look through the
filled with pebbles worn by dancers in Pascolas, by Miguel
opening between the slats of the wall of a wooden house
Antonio Rosas Rodríguez, part of the artistic expression
of this complex celebration in northwest Mexico, directly
at life on the other side through a fence of pipes marking
referring to the sound of the dance. In Montserrat de los
the border.
Ángeles Salcedo Alba’s Traditions, a line of sombreros next
The Contemporary Mexico Prize went to
to what we assume are pews in a church offer a male por-
The Last VW Bug, by Iago Leonardo Fernández-Cabre-
trait of a community in Jalisco. César Rodríguez Becerra’s
ra, who shows a scene from the Underwater Museum
image of preparations, Mexican Horsemen, gives us an
near Cancún. The images awarded Honorable Mention
unusual view of these festive events still practiced in many
show heterogeneous visions: Free Love, by photogra-
places in the country.
pher Fernando Manuel Escárcega Pérez, constructs a
The Big Wedding, by photojournalist Denisse
scene of gay love that could also have competed in the
Pohls Pérez, takes us to modern-day festivities that involve
family category; San Luis: A Place of Cantera, Metal,
the community; whereas, Push It!, by Eduardo Capdeville
Sun and Cactus, by Ramón Moreno Carlos, is a formal
Cureño, offers a different perspective of marriage rites.
exercise that juxtaposes the verticality of the voids in a
Gabriel Bravo’s photo, Summer Heat, lacks
any symbolic charge beyond the sheer enjoyment of wa-
contemporary building with the solid row of organ cactuses, accentuated by contrasting colors.
ter. Sergio Barra de la Cruz’s series Day of the Dead in
The Social Commitment Prize was for Ap-
Oaxaca is composed of portraits that accentuate the
parently by Alejandro Aguirre Castellanos, who in the
theatrical aspects of the ritual. At the same time, photo-
text declares that the image might not be clear. Paola
journalist Ernesto Muñiz Apango’s Zocalo Surfing offers
Zava­leta’s His Love Keeps Us Going, which also shows
a glimpse of contemporary rituals in which music and
visits paid by individuals who raise the spirits of termi-
crowds are essential components.
nally ill patients, was awarded Honorable Mention, as
was Story Telling by photographer Guillermo Robles Oce-
Modernity and Social Commitment
guera. They offer images filled with hope to educate us
A few photographs effectively show aspects of technologi-
about the powerful and healing role of storytellers. A few
cal modernity or refer to examples of social commitment,
other photos refer to learning. An inspiring image shows
perhaps because they deal with abstract problems that re-
teachers and children—but not the desert classroom
quire another means of expression in popular photographic
shot by Alejandro Tijerina, mentioned earlier—in Rafael
language. Perhaps it can also be said that they reflect a re-
Campillo Ro­dríguez’s Children in a Rural School and
ality of contemporary society, a lack of solidarity with our
Andrea López Fernández’s Time to Read!, which takes
fellow man. Be that as it may, ultimately all of the images
us to a library for children with Down’s Syndrome, and
reflect contemporary Mexico and celebrations are another
Mónica Salazar Arriaga’s Road to the Past, which was
category of community action.
awarded Honorable Mention in the General category.
Only one photo alludes to migration, of both
Mexicans and Central Americans to the United States.
About Children and Families
José Francisco Jiménez Castro’s The Border: Looking
Many images show portraits of children generally in-
Northward, which was awarded Honorable Mention in the
volved in an activity. Armando Robles Calvario received
General category, presents a group of Mexicans that break
the Mexi­c an Children Prize for My Teddy, an austere com-
the stereotype: with their backs to the camera they look
position that centers on the delight of playing. Carlos
Gustavo González Sánchez’s Bad Boys magnifies the
motorcycle; an image that has been repeated since the
expressions of four children facing the camera; it won
popularization of this means of transport.
Honorable Mention, as did Jaime Arturo Ávalos Gómez’s
More Water than Land, which shows an “indigenous
Indigenous People and Portraits
Chon­tal girl” riding past a bus painted to mirror the Ta-
The representation of indigenous people has had to
basco tropics.
change through time; communities are undergoing trans-
Several photos allude to children at work.
formation and they incorporate elements of the con-
Everyone on the Way Home and A Hard Day’s Work by
temporary world into their customs, activities, and
Miguel Antonio González González project an idyllic im-
clothing. However, images that capture common features
age of what might be considered a problem by connect-
—color, poverty, passiveness, and so forth—continue to
ing them to traditional rural culture in compositions drawn
with a skillful handling of light. Dedication to art is con-
Photographer Alexandro Bolaños Escami­
veyed in Ericka Vanessa López Sánchez’s Classical
lla’s Huichol Girls Playing Volleyball II is an example of
Youth, although the importance of child’s play predomi-
the change in this vision. He won Third Prize in Black and
nates, as in The Bike of Dreams, by David Adrián Mejía
White for this updated image of women in a Huichol
Velázquez, and Rules Never Are What’s Important, by
community in Jalisco. Los engrasados, by award-winning
Benito Armando Jiménez Benavides.
mentary photographer Yael Martínez Velázquez,
Photojournalist Félix de Jesús Ayala Aguirre’s
Valle de las Ranas (Valley of the Frogs) won the Mexi-
confronts us with a cross-dressing group practicing mysterious indigenous rituals.
can Family Prize; even though his text refers to the role
Portraiture appears in diverse subject and
of indigenous women in family cohesion and praises
prize categories in posed compositions, in complicity with
their abnegation, the photo shows loneliness and dis-
the subject, or in fortuitous encounters. Although we can-
tance among the members of the family. A similar schism
not define her as indigenous, Ariel Silva’s Mexican Beauty
can be seen in New Year Breakfast, by young award-win-
represents mestizaje. The composition and pose of the
ning photographer María Alejandra Cárdenas Palacios,
young woman recalls the image taken by Ángeles Torre-
who received First Prize in Color. In her image five intro-
jón, one of the award recipients in the earlier competition
spective individuals are assembled around the table to
(Comunidad La Realidad, Lacandon Jungle, Chiapas). Ru-
celebrate the daily rite of breakfast on a special day. An-
ral and urban female worlds collide in the subway train in
other special day is captured in Ana Laura Pérez Apari-
Daniel Rodríguez Villa’s Dimensions, which won Honor-
cio’s Kings Day in Zapatista Autonomy, which was
able Mention in the General category; it is one of the few
awarded Honorable Mention. The food ritual again brings
images that employs the violence of contrast in assem-
family members to gather around the table; however, for
bling its discourse.
security reasons they must cover their faces and only the
guest’s face is revealed. In contrast, Miguel Ángel Carbajal
Ecology and Landscape
Quintana’s Faces of Our Times shows a united rural
Examining images submitted for the Fomento Ecológico
family, smiling despite their visible poverty. Eric Verdier’s
Banamex Prize, the job of raising awareness in these imag-
Family is a backlit image showing everyone piled onto a
es does not necessarily lead to powerful images. The winner
in this category, Ricardo Jandette Cruz’s Lena shows a practi-
in Michoacán, and photographer Ignacio Hernández
cal urban solution: using car tires as steps. Lizeth Salas
Gue­vara’s The Samalayuca Dunes in Chihuahua.
keenly observed and captured a lizard camouflaged
In closing, it would be fair to say that the
on a leaf in Agave Dragon, which was given Honorable
competition visualized the demands of reconstructing
Mention. Luis Felipe Rivera Lezama’s The Heartbeat of
the space of everyday life—for individuals and society—
Conservation points out that knowledge of work in the
as survival strategies given the seriousness of the vio-
countryside goes hand in hand with respect for the envi-
lence unleashed by the war against drug trafficking, a
ronment. First Prize in Black and White went to Ricardo
reality in much of the country. The overall quality of the
Ruiz Cruz’s Dying to Live, which sums up the dilemma of
images attests to the artistic potential of the medium
capturing and preserving faunal specimens to obtain
and its ability to bear witness, as well as the power of
knowledge that will serve future conservation.
electronic devices to place images in circulation and to
The landscape is represented on both a
train photographers.
monu­mental and human scale. La Pasión, by photojour-
Even though the overwhelming response
nalist Izhar Gómez Flores, is an example of the latter. His
made the selection process a challenge, the number of
clothesline in the desert received Honorable Mention in
prizes and honorable mentions ensured that the diversity
the General category.
of subjects and approaches proposed for the participants
The landscape also lends itself to visual plays,
was amply represented. The results are captured on the
as in Chiapas Color, by photographer Héctor Montes de
pages of this book, but above all in the photo collection
Oca Flores, who in his low-angle shot reconciles human-
that resulted from the competitions. This now forms part
kind with nature in Palenque National Park, and in The
of the rich holdings of Fomento Cultural Banamex, an
Familiar Tree, the exuberant natural arc by Antonio Cer-
institution that is committed to studying and promoting
vantes Durán. Serving as testimony of natural sites that
these images. In the future, it will be possible to review the
have preserved meaning in their regions are José Arrequi
collection Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II as a stratum of
Ibarra’s Nature Come Alive, a vision of Lake Camécuaro
visual history that displays a complex discursive plurality.
Rosa Casanova
Dirección de Estudios Históricos
Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia
Mexico: Weighing Images
Nothing is more difficult than escaping from archetypes.
in its different avatars was assimilated as a tool that ac-
As happens with all creative and informative processes,
companied both adventures in the political arena and
through time photography has forged its own lines of
incidents in daily life. Its ubiquitous presence made it pos-
renewal, as well as its anchor points. The historical trajecto-
sible to penetrate all social spheres by contributing icon-
ry of photography arose from a common source that split
ic images that began to pervade scenes in public life and
early on as one of the logical demands imposed by the
what is now referred to as the collective imaginary.
fast-paced cultural and political archipelago of the mod-
Urban and rural landscapes, jungles, monuments, ar-
ern world. At its origin, photography responded to a me-
chaeological sites, mountain ranges, coastlines, indige-
chanical reflex of industrial societies. It emerged as
nous communities, images of conflict, and portraits filled
a road to be taken out of idle curiosity, folklore, the pic-
the first chapters of the story of photography, whose
turesque, novelty on the market, and the generic repetition
pioneers were largely merchants, adventurers, natural
that reproduced reality. Gradually, but in a different way,
scientists, and travelers.
a parallel path arose—one less taken—which opened the
Mexico was seen then by photographers
field of the possibilities of experimentation, especially in
from Europe and the United States as a sector on the pe-
the quest for expressions that went beyond the visible
riphery of the world through a constellation of still-distant
world and that attempted to tap the intangible, the ephemer-
gazes that found the stereotyped models of a nation in
al, the hidden—all that could be revealed only by visions
archaeology, typical figures in society, flora, fauna, and
never before seen.
downtown Mexico City. These images became the inter-
Clearly nineteenth-century photography
marked the visual memory that disseminated and con-
mediate links in a long positivist chain used to measure
the gradations of civilization at that time.
secrated an image of Mexico worldwide. At first it par-
Multiple factors had a decisive bearing on
layed iconic prints and a human and monumental typol-
defining the social and formal fate of photography in
ogy that ensured its place in the expansive mentality of
Mexico and all over the planet: the secularization of art, a
the Western universe. Then it became an ambivalent me-
phenomenon permeated by innovations in technical re-
dium capable of both homogenizing the idea of a coun-
producibility and the dissolution of the aura of the unique
try (which was also trying to define its own profile as an
piece of art; the persistent demand for visual information
independent entity) and of incessantly reconfiguring the
by the media; the central role and rise of scenes of daily
plurality of Mexico’s faces and complexities. The camera
life; the generalized curiosity inspired by the camera; the
unstoppable impulse of institutions and family circles to
or immediate visibility. Time and human action made it
keep memory alive—whether collective or private—and
impossible for any affirmation to be absolute and with-
to treasure it.
out doubt, both trends on many occasions overlapped.
The most perceptible development in the
In a positive way, each of them has provided us with an
story of photography rested fundamentally on a dichoto­
unlimited roster of photographic images—a reflection of
my that alternates between repetition and revelation. On
attitudes, needs, and poses. It should be underscored that
the one hand, repetition was incubated in the records of
in all cases, as in all fields of thought, only a small per-
so-called direct photography, understood as an ever-
centage of these images accompany us as emblematic
open window to the appearances of simple, plain reali-
or representative material that has continued to reso-
ty. On the other hand, revelation was the photographic
nate through time.
act that intervened, experimented, and reinterpreted re-
A challenge for the field of photography to-
ality through a new formal dimension and an increas-
day is the renewal and updating of “classic” themes in
ingly personal and irrepressible language. It was inher-
the iconic repertoire. In other words, it means the possi-
ent to concerns that responded to a dynamic applied to
bility of revisiting canonical subjects of the past in light
the world of ideas more than to the realm of mere testi-
of contributions that successively drive the rupture of
monies. In other words, revelation was a path that ap-
rules and archetypes. This is one of the most pressing
pealed to plasticity and the resignification of images,
tasks facing photography. All projects that permit the
which has become increasingly present in the creative
evaluation and broad overview of the state of things in
adventure of human thought.
the realm of Mexican photography are relevant. It is a
The first attempt was projected on a series
of practices that were highly useful for producing the in-
practice that must be encouraged, above all if it has a systematic character in the field.
terminable inventory of subjects, things, and events that
populated Mexican territory. It performed the role of registration. The notion of objective vision generated gazes
The El México de los mexicanos II-Mexico
circumscribed to the immediate reflex, a minimal aspect
in the Eyes of Mexicans II project offers a real opportu-
of a routine that reproduced the phenomena of a reality
nity to make constants, changes, manifest or latent
stripped of conceptual or imaginary folds. At times it
strengths and weaknesses in the exercise of photography
might appear that this random aspect was the materiali­
today visible, based on images that explore the Mexican
zation of a strategy to prevent the perception of this re-
reality and its intricate geography from different social
ality from being modified and to ensure that the identity
angles. It is an open encounter between professionals
component—or what has been historically defined as
and amateurs, which in its second edition establishes
such—remains inert and fixed, as an emblem of a world
one of the possible panoramas to recognize the scope
that gravitates in time without change. The other path
and diverse practices in photography from our present.
appealed to universes revealed only by means of visions
Beyond what is shared or differentiated in
that reconfigure the natural gaze and that confer a criti-
terms of quality, the images attest to material and crea­
cal, analytical, or even poetic charge on it. This perspec-
tive transformations and stagnation, cultural differences
tive suggested or reconsidered reality beyond functional
and coincidences, exposing fault lines—and also impover-
ishment—among periods and visions that arise from the
designed illumination reveals the intention to employ a
complex fabric of a nation. Suffice a gaze at this collec-
carefully controlled visual structure. Dying to Live is the
tion to recognize a diversity that is immediately associ-
only photo in the selection that shows a dead subject,
ated with the concept of imaginaries, addressing gener-
the only image that sublimates the representation of re-
alized conceptions of the people. In the particular case of
ality. Perhaps these considerations, together with its im-
photography, it appeals to perceptions, most frequently
peccable production, earned it First Prize in the Black and
fueled not by the idea of reality as something given and
White category.
final, but rather for its re-presentations or visual figura-
Another general reading of the images pre-
tions, clearly showing why linear and fixed visions could
sented, beyond the competition categories, allows us
never capture the essential elements of culture. Alterna-
to hazard that photos of “the other Mexicans” predomi-
tive experiences and positions distanced from formal
nate, in other words indigenous people or those living in
conventions reveal best the dynamic that a society uses
rural zones. They are almost always represented in refer-
to construct the means to recognize itself.
ential atmospheres or associated with elements typical
There is a looming difficulty in discerning
of their cultural milieu: traditions, dances, trades. Signifi-
these alternative modes of seeing. Therefore, the test rep-
cantly, they (the others) are inseparable from the land-
resented by Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II for photog-
scape photographed, beings merged with the surround-
raphers and readers of images should be appreciated. It
ings. This is an aesthetic and conceptual gesture inevitably
is both a critical and a celebratory forum that allows us to
associated with México profundo, the book-emblem that
see an ample reflexive horizon of a practice that touches
for its ideological underpinning transcended the title
the interest of all sectors of the population. To a large ex-
given by Guillermo Bonfil Batalla1 to become a construc-
tent, its value resides in the will to share the extensive cata­
tion of the imaginary, often useful to justify sagas of
logue of images assembled for everyone who identifies
doubtful or precarious symbolism. This is why differen-
photography as one of the privileged forms of knowledge.
tiated ways of perceiving these “other Mexicans” stand
In an initial reading of the photos in this book,
out, through a gaze that perceives them as more vital,
what draws viewer attention is the fact that with a single
more every day, more contemporary. Their singularity is
exception, all of the images chosen correspond to what
nuanced and their presence is given new content, by be-
can be identified as direct photography, formerly known
ing observed from a horizontal perspective in the ideo-
as “documentary,” which is still open to debate. Ricardo
logical sphere, without reiterating ad nauseam their time-
Ruiz Cruz is the sole photographer who offers a construct-
lessness and without demonstrating what photographic
ed image, Dying to Live, in black and white, of a sparrow
practice from other times already made clear; instead by
suspended in a beaker in a lab, a setting that clarifies the
tapping into a world stripped of clichés and staged re-
meaning of the work’s title. Ruiz’s photo would seem to
sources. This is the case of the photo Huichol Girls Playing
be a sensible response to a scientific procedure that might
Volleyball II by Alexandro Bolaños Escamilla, which was
allude to taxidermy. However, the fact that this bird—one
of the most common in the world—hangs from twine held
Guillermo Bonfil Batalla, México profundo. Una civilización negada, Mexico City, Sec-
by an ordinary wooden clothespin and that the beaker
retaría de Educación Pública/Centro de Investigaciones y Estudios Superiores en
has been sanded to dull the reflections from the carefully
Reclaiming a Civilization, Austin, University of Texas Press, 1996.)
Antropología Social, colección Foro 2000, 1987. (English edition: México Profundo:
awarded Third Prize in Black and White. It is an image
anteaters. All of the participants are members of different
that summons the natural universal emotion that arises at
confraternities or brotherhoods and they dance through
a sports competition probably held in the central square
the streets and neighborhoods for a week—from Sunday
of a community. In this same vein is Annick Donkers Crafts-
to Sunday—especially on Corpus Christi Thursday, the
woman, recipient of the Fomento Cultural Banamex Prize,
day honored by this celebration. The festivities conclude
an image that will be discussed below. Montserrat de los
in the atrium of the church of the Blessed Sacrament.2
Ángeles Salcedo Alba’s Traditions, Thor Edmundo Mora­
Confronted with this tumultuous gathering and the sound
les Vera’s Turkey at Dusk, Fernando Arce Sánchez’s Agave
of drums, rattles, and flutes that today can be shared on
Essences, Benito Armando Jiménez Benavides’s Rules
social networks, Hernández chose to show us a stylized
Never Are What’s Important, and Jesús Lorenzo Hernán-
fragment of the event. His decision reveals the determi-
dez Hernández’s Calalá are wise choices that qualita-
nation of his gaze and his knowledge of his surroundings
tively shift any bias for transhistorical folklore or the petri-
as proof of a symbiosis and cultural renewal.
fied gaze of a culpable anthropology. In fact Jesús Lorenzo
In this sense, Calalá not only updates us in
Hernández Hernández’s image was awarded First Prize
an informative way on the path taken by an indigenous
in this competition. In it, a group of individuals dressed in
dance, but also places the composition of the photo at
jaguar costumes—clear references to a traditional dance—
the service of the image of a reconstituted tradition. It
are crouching in an area marked on the asphalt ground,
speaks to us of a photographer skilled in visually orga-
beside a sign that emphasizes the presence of the urban
nizing an idea and who offers an image that synthesizes
world. The image dilutes the archetypes of a predictable
the scope of an ancestral rite that is not afraid to con-
front the present.
Hernández presents this troupe—dancers in
Another photograph that shows the possi-
the Calalá or Dance of the Giant—in a frame that plays
bility of renewing images of indigenous worlds is Annick
with color and shapes, as he updates a tradition within a
Donkers’s Craftswoman, which shows a Huichol or
fully recognizable contemporaneity. Long ago, this dance
Wixá­rika woman from the community of San Andrés Co-
was part of a fertility rite; during the viceroyalty the friars
hamiata, Jalisco. In a far cry from costumbrista imagery
who catechized the central region of Chiapas repurposed
[showing nineteenth-century rural traditions], Donkers
it to honor the Most Blessed Sacrament, which explains
shares a moment of the woman’s daily life as she per-
why the chalice and host appear on the back of the cos-
forms her craft in the interior of her home. It captures a
tumes. The community of Suchiapa participates in the
cozy intimate atmosphere and takes advantage of the
Calalá ceremonial dance, including children as well as
light filtering through the curtain covering a window—
tourists; the dancers dress as different characters, the
perhaps a mosquito net—and of the lines suggested by
most important of which are the Feathered Giant or Quet­
the humble furnishings. As a result of the framing, the
zalcoatl and the Gigantillo (Small Giant). Members of the
gaze concentrates on the figure of the woman, absorbed
jaguar groups wear masks and costumes alluding to this
feline, a creature surrounded by sacred connotations;
Óscar Gutiérrez, a correspondent for the newspaper El Universal, wrote a chronicle of
groups of Chamula Indians wear typical hats, paint their
this dance at the 2014 celebration, available at www.eluniversal.com.mx/cultura/
faces white, and usually carry desiccated iguanas and
September 4, 2014.
2014/concluye-ritual-de-la-39danza-del-calala-39-en-chiapas-1018671.html, accessed
in her work stringing seedbeads together. Originally
carved the rocks giving rise to whimsical shapes, resem-
from Belgium, Donkers has made her career as a pho-
bling frogs—hence its name—and he uses the physical
tographer in Mexico. Psychology was a part of her aca-
environment as a suggestive resource, superimposed
demic training and her images contain a difficult balance
over any anecdotal aspect. Seated on the rocks, with a
between social phenomenon and inner worlds: her photo
backdrop composed of white clouds that automatically
shows both the visible and the invisible in her composi-
position us on a spot extremely high up, a woman, an
tions. As mentioned earlier, Craftswoman was awarded
adolescent boy, and a girl—near and far at the same
First Prize in the Fomento Cultural Banamex category.
time—shatter the traditional family portrait, in which the
Of the finalists in the competition that deal
members are commonly presented in a close spatial
with indigenous themes and of the sixty-two indigenous
union that leaves practically no open space. This rupture
groups officially recognized by the Comisión Nacional
gives the photo a formal eloquence that for an instant
de los Pueblos Indígenas (National Commission of Indige­
allows us to approach the mystery of the family relation-
nous Peoples), the Ralámulis or Rarámuris3—the name
ship between these three individuals, whose ties seem to
that this ethnic group uses to refer to itself and whose
be paradoxically sealed for perpetuity in the landscape,
territorial core is to be found in the Tarahumara sierra—
but spatially and generationally distanced. A strong ma-
are the indigenous group with greatest representation in
ternal figure—in this case represented by someone who
this edition. The number of photos of Ralámulis makes
is perhaps the grandmother—photographed in the fore-
them worth comment.
ground is followed by a boy, barely an adolescent, dressed
Clearly, the impressive canyons in the moun-
in untraditional clothes, and a little girl, the only one who
tain ranges of the state of Chihuahua are one of the ma-
looks at the camera from afar, and who combines her tra-
jor destinations for ethnic-culture tourism. Perhaps this
ditional skirt and kerchief with a modern jacket, ultimately
might explain the origin of images such as Brissa García’s
a sign of the shared and distant times between the two
Light Aircraft Flying over Sinforosa and Félix de Jesús
female figures.
Ayala Aguirre’s Valle de las Ranas (Valley of the Frogs).
In the photo segment based on the Ralámu-
The title of the latter refers to one of the most frequently
lis there had to be a photo of Holy Week, the festivity
visited sites in the region given its proximity to the city of
most closely identified with this group and also with most
Creel; it is the setting that Ayala Aguirre chose to photo-
indigenous communities in Mexico. Tarahumara Roots by
graph three Ralámulis. In this black and white photo, re-
Raúl Barajas is the color portrait of a painted adolescent.
cipient of the Prize in the Mexican Family category, the use
It self-consciously revisits the shots taken since the 1960s
of landscape is highly unique, because none of the fea-
in this region, employing the portrait as a genre not only
tures that have systematically characterized tourist im-
impregnated with curiosity confronting the inhabitant
ages of the site appear in this shot. He breaks with the
of a world unknown by the dominant culture, but also of
typical representation of this valley, where the winds have
fascination and exaltation of the dignity of the subject
of the image. Rules Never Are What’s Important by Be­
nito Armando Jiménez Benavides adds to the updated
Ana Paula Pintado, Los hijos de Riosi y Riablo: fiestas grandes y resistencia cultural en
una comunidad tarahumara de la barranca, Mexico City, Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, 2013.
visions of this people. Jiménez Benavides’s framing focuses attention on what seem to be the legs of children
at play in a fierce dispute over a soccer ball. This shot not
it produces and for its effectiveness as a visual image.
only shows the footwear and the lower edge of tradition-
For years in barrios and towns, the care that young mem-
al garb, but also humorously lets us see the right foot
bers of the community invest in their costumes has made
missing a leather sandal of one of the participants. It per-
these festivities a sort of veiled Mardi Gras. Here a syn-
haps shows a way of assimilating a sport that was not
cretism that addresses a recovery that uses globalized
fully adapted to the orthodoxy of Ralámuli dress, but that
culture to apply it to old traditions comes to the surface;
has penetrated the life of the community through the
perhaps this image asks us if its survival or obliteration
fun it represents.
depends on a balance of the elements at play.
In the age of the widest circulation of images
in history, we can extrapolate the apothegm that Susan
Another subject in several of the photos
Sontag wrote a few decades ago, “Now all art aspires to
presented here is Day of the Dead celebrations, a line
the condition of photography,”4 and take it a step further
that can lead to a dangerous stream of highly rhetorical
with the equally eloquent: “All facts aspire to be photo-
picturesqueness that is not easy to shake off. In this top-
graphed to be true.”
ic, there is no lack of images of cemeteries, with their
classic mourners and deceased. Nonetheless, it is precisely as a celebration with strong popular roots that its
It is possible to recognize some photos in
potential is very high, which is evident in two photos
which, with greater or lesser vitality, these “other worlds”
that give it a disturbing actuality, both shots taken in the
in our world are captured, such as images of emblematic
state of Oaxaca.
Mexican nature, represented metaphorically by cactuses
Sergio Barra de la Cruz’s Boy Wearing a Cos-
and agaves. In this collection their visual charge is refor-
tume, recipient of Honorable Mention in the Jury Prize,
mulated with La Pasión by Izhar Gómez Flores, who gives
gives us the black and white portrait of one of the chil-
life to the rugged terrain, dotted with organ cactuses and
dren who participates in the troupes that parade through
scrub, by focusing his attention on a clothesline. The tonal
the streets of Nazareno Etla for the Day of the Dead on
range is controlled and the garments hung on a line are
November 1 and 2. At that time, the participants in the
uniform; one end of the line is tied to the body of an organ
muerteada, as the parade is commonly known, come from
cactus with the other end beyond the frame of the image.
different localities disguised in costumes that fuse Hal-
In some way the photo shares the aesthetic of an instal-
loween—with all of the paraphernalia typical of charac-
lation and expresses a gaze with an interesting composi-
ters from horror films—and the “traditional” imaginary
tional structure, which earned Gómez Flores Honorable
expected of this observance in Mexico, such as calaveras
Mention in the General category. The second photo that
catrinas, elegantly dressed female skeletons from the
offers a fresh approach to agave iconography is Lizeth
late-nineteenth-century imagination of José Guadalu­pe
Salas’s Agave Dragon, the recipient of Honorable Men-
Posada. In this case, the costume of the boy photographed by Barra has elements from an aesthetic very
Susan Sontag, Sobre la fotografía, Barcelona, Edhasa, 1981, p. 159. To reach this para-
closely tied to Japanese horror cinematography and
digm, Sontag turned to the dictum of Walter Pater (1839–1894), British essayist and
that is certainly disconcerting, both for the culture shock
Sontag, On Photography, New York, Farrar, Strauss, Giroux, 1977.)
art critic who wrote: “all art aspires to the condition of music.” (English edition: Susan
tion in the Fomento Ecológico Banamex category. She
exploit to the maximum the opportune nature of the
offers us a fine understanding of the volumetric quality of
snapshot that freezes striking moments, such as a preci-
this plant—taken together with the lines, colors, and tex-
sion shot, taken by Víctor Ricardo Flores Estrada when
tures of the reptile stretched out on a dry rough leaf that
the bull “Triunfador” charged on bullfighter Luis Con­
resembles the skin of the animal it shelters—creating a
rado, who lies on the sand of the ring in the Plaza Mé­
strong image conveying the integration and fragility of
xico. Adrián Dovalí Calderón’s Steady is a photo that not
an ecosystem. Salas’s perception is accentuated by the
only shows the skill of a charro (Mexican horseman) in
use of a lens that sensibly augments the effect of the cir-
handling the lasso, but also—together with Charros (Mex­
cularity between the plant, the reptile, and the land.
ican Horsemen) by César Rodríguez Becerra—expresses
the zeal for the practice that has been dubbed a “national sport,” since the administration of general Lázaro
For its connotations the subject of sports in
the photographic universe of Mexico in the Eyes of Mexi-
Cárdenas, a designation in accord with those post-­
revolutionary times.
cans II is also worth noting. Mention has already been made
of how the images of sports practiced by indigenous
peoples trigger in our perception the idea of a contem-
In another group, sheltering successes and
porary profile in their communities, supporting a dynamic
sorrows in the city, it is possible to find scenes, land-
development in time. In other contexts, the vehemence
scapes, and figures that portray Mexicans as fundamen-
of sporting events evokes accounts deprived of glamour,
tally urban societies or with clear aspirations of urbani­
suggesting an epic of intimate dimensions, as in the case
zation, with all of the implications that this category may
of Édgar Quintana Méndez’s Victory on Wheels, a decid-
contain. New Year Breakfast, by María Alejandra Cárde-
edly moving portrait of Aarón Gordián Martínez—a cham-
nas Palacios, is a family picture awarded First Prize in
pion in multiple competitions involving individuals of dif-
the Color category. Stripped of the symbolic and media
ferent abilities—who celebrated his triumph after winning
hype of the start of a year (an ordinary family setting that
the 1500-meter race at the 2011 Parapan American Games
points to the good intentions and renewed resolutions),
in Guadalajara, Jalisco. Boxing, by Víctor Emiliano Solorio
a Mexican middle-class family sits down to the first
Reyes, is a noteworthy black and white image that shows
breakfast of the year, with the routine and rhythm of any
two young men duking it out in the open air; the face of
morning of the year. However, the enamel pan on the ta-
only one of the rivals is seen in the image, with an expres-
ble might refer to the reheated leftovers from the pre­
sion that denotes the tension and warrior impulse of the
vious night’s feast. The girl with the towel on her head
match. The choice of the low angle framed by the cloudy
suggests that this family is accustomed to eating break-
sky, as well as the photo’s minimalist title, gives the im-
fast together on a regular basis. The photographic mo-
age open possibilities, including drama, a search for hori-
ment presents them as separated, disassociated in their
zons both for the sports image, and for the protagonists
gazes, incapable of connecting at any point, and ab-
of this spectacle-sport.
sorbed in their thoughts, leaving the viewer to feel the
Images of horsemanship and bullfighting
weight of the distance often generated by familiarity.
are in a similar spirit to the group of sports photos. They
From a colder, but also more analytical, perspective, this
photograph might be seen as a testimony of the secu-
It is worth drawing some lessons from Mexi-
larization of celebrations, the loss of rituality in the world
co in the Eyes of Mexicans II as a plural and open compe-
of the city.
tition dealing with the state of photography in Mexico
Cities are a like a huge box where every-
and in terms of the vision it holds of the present:
thing fits and everything happens. This is evoked by the
1. Capturing is not necessarily creating. The
variety of subjects derived from the group of photos tak-
objectivity conferred upon photography, stemming from
en in different cities. In this category are the inevitable re-
its condition as a mechanical phenomenon, has served
interpretations of generic subjects that date back to the
through time to validate the consistency of certain events.
nineteenth century, such as trades and characters or (pro-
It has become a source of reconstitution of credibility, but
to) types: Story Telling by Guillermo Robles Oceguera, The
its generalized impact—more fast-paced than gradual—
Seamstress by Gustavo Esparza Gardea, Pilgrim by Nelly
has gone beyond its own record to be recognized as a pow-
Angélica Acosta Díaz, Borrego Viudo (taco shop) by María
erful documentary source and as a form of creative ex-
Montserrat Ortega Arriaga, and Street Sounds (saxo-
pression with its own codes and language. Today it is
phonist) by Carlos Jesús Alegría Ramírez.
feasible to identify an enormous school of photographers
Despite a certain degree of reiteration in the
who are immersed in all of the arenas of the Mexican world.
canonical figures of the metropolitan milieu, it is highly
Both professionals and amateurs, they require periodical
significant that within the images of this geographic and
evaluations—above all on a qualitative order—to place
social setting there are two photos that focus on the every-
their work in the planetary context of photography.
day nature of same sex couples: homosexuality. One Sep-
2. For more than 170 years photographers
tember 15, by Eric Scibor-Rylski, is the candid shot of
have produced images of Mexico in which they recorded
two youths stealing a kiss on the platform of a subway
novel episodes as well as scenes and eternal feelings. Pho-
station, a simple scene of urban love, without staged fig-
tographs incessantly reformulated the visual horizon and
ural resources that emphasize or attempt to overload
in themselves they form a framework that demands the
the content of the image, which is in itself revealing of the
attention of specialists and all types of public, whether
world that it verifies. Purposeful in content and in line with
as collective or private property. They can be part of the
the work that has characterized its creator, Free Love by
history of a country or reflections of a unique existence;
Fernando Escárcega Pérez, known on the photo circuit as
either way, they are completely valid.
“Fershow,” sets the stage right in the street—with the accu-
3. Mexicans form a vast mosaic that prompts
rate pothole and trash on the corner—where an amorous
numerous questions and enigmas that people have at-
male couple poses in a bed in front of a red wall painted
tempted to decipher from different perspectives; pho-
with the heart logo of a well-known ice cream brand. The
tography is one of them. Behind an indisputable visual rich-
efficacy of this image is not the result of its intrinsic au-
ness, a spent iconography can appear that only responds
dacity, but rather for the everyday setting and humor that
to obsolete values or static perceptions. The incessant
permeates the photo, as well as for its capacity to resolve
interplay between the unknown and the known is a ma-
a real fact on the basis of its simulacrum. This photo was
jor challenge to re-dimension the meaning of identity as
awarded Honorable Mention in the Contemporary Mexi-
a multiple phenomenon in constant flux. Without falling
co category.
into the cult of novelty, it can be said that photography is
a resource to reinterpret reality, to make it more visible
beginning to appear: a vast geography and a population
and even more disturbing.
continuously exceeded by its material reality. Facing the
4. The gaze of nineteenth-century photog-
long experience of a nation, photography has become a
raphers was the basis of a vision that combined classifi-
black box that holds everything; the photographic eye
cations, typologies, and folklore, a horizon on which pro-
reminds us and asks us about what we do and don’t want
foundly contradictory social surroundings were slowly
to see.
Sergio Raúl Arroyo
La mitotiliztli (Aztec dance) Édgar Xólot
The machine of Mexica cultural resistance and warfare
Plaza de la Constitución (Central Square), Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Calalá Jesús Lorenzo Hernández Hernández
Jaguars dance in the Corpus Christi celebration to ask for abundance in the new cycle
Suchiapa, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Immensity 1 Alejandro Rojo
How insignificant we feel in the face of such immensity, such a legacy, and how lucky we are that someone remembers us!
Archaeological Zone of Teotihuacan, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Palenque at Daybreak César Javier Reynada
Archaeological Zone of Palenque, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Malinalco Felipe Saravia Mejía
Church cloister, Malinalco, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Pleasant Surprise Danae Castillo Bautista
Nevado de Toluca, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Noh Mozón Cenote Benjamín Magaña Rodríguez
A little known cenote of spectacular beauty for the rays of light that penetrate it at different times of day
Tecoh, Yucatán
Index of Photographers
Agave Essences Fernando Arce Sánchez
The strength and dignity of a people resides in its tradition and culture. In Santa Catarina Minas Ángeles Carreño’s family knows
how to value and preserve this ideology through the production of traditional mescal made from agave juice distilled in clay vessels
Santa Catarina Minas, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
Pascolas (Ritual dancers) Miguel Antonio Rosas Rodríguez
Navojoa, Sonora
Index of Photographers
Fishermen Rosa María Santos Espinosa
Veracruz, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
The Border: Looking Northward José Francisco Jiménez Castro
Mexican families do not always share common characteristics. Nevertheless, they have the same dreams and in northern Mexico
their sights will always be divided between their hopes for the future and their roots
Tijuana, Baja California
Index of Photographers
Assembling a Cylinder Josué Mejía Sandoval
They climb on steel, on concrete, they attach, share, tighten, pump, I photograph, they align, equip, joke, talk, tie, look for,
point, anchor, pull, walk, play, set up scaffolding, position, render, remove the falsework, whitewash, construct, build up, channel, clean, make rings, load, plane, plaster, fill, tamp down, winch, dance, wait, shape, slap, strike the concrete, push, hammer,
break into pieces, sweep, mix, adjust, measure, discuss, look, eat, dampen, oil, show, carry in wheelbarrows, sample, attend to,
contain, wall, make compartments, level, smooth, chisel, observe, prop up, dig, bend, think
Benito Juárez district, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Eternal Path Alex Simón
Death has no respect. More than two thousand niches for children
Municipal cemetery, Morelia, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
Sugar Cane Harvest Héctor Boix Cisneros
Cuauhtémoc, Colima
Index of Photographers
Lena Ricardo Jandette Cruz
Lena likes to go down the tire stairs on her way to school
Laguna de Zumpango, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Expert Hands at the Citlaltépetl Tree Nursery Teúl Moyrón Contreras
Citlaltépetl, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
Freeing Olive Ridley Sea Turtles Max Suárez Salazar
Tecolutla, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
So Many Worlds, So Much Space... María Teresa Vaquero Cruz
Mexico City is the largest population nucleus in the country; it is an impressive urban center. Deep in its heart we can find unique
and surprising participants, as well as the most amazing scenarios, spaces where both actors and settings come together to create
the magnificent work that is reinvented day by day
Esplanade of the Monument to the Revolution, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Bad Boys Carlos Gustavo González Sánchez
San Martín Tepatlaxco, Puebla
Index of Photographers
A Mexican Beauty Ariel Silva
Central park in Ocosingo, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Learning Art Felipe Gerardo Rendón Elías
Fundidora Park Painting Collection, Monterrey, Nuevo León
Index of Photographers
Women Potters Paola Corasaniti
The legacy of the woman potters from Amatenango del Valle is an ancestral profession in mythical geography. It is important
to recognize that cultural patrimony is not limited to monuments and collections of objects. Instead it includes living traditions
and expressions passed down from our ancestors and transmitted to our descendants, such as oral traditions, social customs,
rituals, celebratory acts, knowledge and practices related to nature and the universe, and wisdom and techniques linked to folk
art. Despite its fragile nature, intangible cultural heritage is an important factor in the preservation of cultural diversity in the
face of expanding globalization. The understanding of intangible cultural patrimony from different communities contributes to
the dialogue between cultures and promotes respect for other ways of life
Amatenango del Valle, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
The Illusion José Manuel Espino Ortiz
Photo taken on Kings Day on the outskirts of Tacámbaro, named “pueblo mágico” by the Tourism Ministry
Tacámbaro, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
The Big Wedding Denisse Pohls Pérez
In Huautla getting married is an enormous ritual. Three days before the religious ceremony, the bride and groom are bathed
from head to toe. On the day of the Catholic betrothal they go to the church in a procession together with all of their relatives.
They often combine the occasion with first communions and baptisms. Once they leave the church, the entire town can join the
procession and the party. They are always accompanied by a band of musicians and sometimes a mariachi group
Huautla de Jiménez, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
The Children of Chenalhó César Rodríguez Zavala
This photo was taken behind the Presbyterian church where the Tzotzils from Acteal gather. The room that is behind these
children is used as a storeroom
Acteal, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Child Heroes Abel Gastón Saldaña Tejeda
The children of trash collectors
Asentamiento Las Bermudas, Matamoros, Tamaulipas
Index of Photographers
An Example to Be Followed Salvador Gómez Reyes
Two brothers have fun in a boat
La Marquesa National Park, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Paul McCartney Concert Juan Carlos Equihua Barragán
Plaza de la Constitución (Central Square), Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Fireworks Enrique Arturo Alday Larrauri
Exploding toritos (little bulls) with fireworks at the celebration of Saint John of God
Tultepec, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Children in a Rural School Rafael Campillo Rodríguez
The rural teacher with one of his two preschool students in the community of Linda Vista
Zozocolco de Hidalgo, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
Time to Read! Andrea López Fernández
Let’s promote reading among young people
Comunidad Down, A. C., Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Valle de las Ranas (Valley of the Frogs) Félix de Jesús Ayala Aguirre
In the Tarahumara mountains women play an extremely important role in supporting the family. Unfortunately the men often
have serious alcoholism problems or they abandon their wives and children; in some cases these women decide to leave their
Valle de las Ranas, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Faces of Our Times Miguel Ángel Carbajal Quintana
Santa María del Monte, La Lima, Zinacantepec, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Huichol Girls Playing Volleyball II Alexandro Bolaños Escamilla
San Andrés Cohamiata, Mezquitic, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
The Heartbeat of Conservation Luis Felipe Rivera Lezama
The mountain’s heartbeat is not the same with livestock raising, but it is true that there are some who are deciding to change
old practices. There are places in the vicinity of the mountain where the dream is beginning to change. One step at a time
Cattle ranch, Pijijiapan, Sierra Madre de Chiapas
Index of Photographers
New Year Breakfast María Alejandra Cárdenas Palacios
Having breakfast at my grandmother’s house
Rancho San Antonio, Tarandacuao, Guanajuato
Index of Photographers
Kings Day in Zapatista Autonomy Ana Laura Pérez Aparicio
The last night with my Zapatista family arrived. It was January 6 and they asked me what I usually did on that day. I answered that
we shared a traditional Kings Day rosca cake. Moments later the elder and younger sons arrived with an enormous ring-shaped
rosca de reyes with tiny dolls hidden in it. They made coffee and I enjoyed the best rosca I have ever had with a family. By the way,
I got stuck with two of the dolls
Las Margaritas, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
The Faith of a People José de Jesús de la Torre Martínez de Escobar
A child innocently breaks the formation of the people in the town of Zinacantán, who display their faith in the celebration of
their patron saint’s day
Zinacantán, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
La Petatera Héctor Boix Cisneros
La Petatera is a bullring unique in the world
Villa de Álvarez, Colima
Index of Photographers
Parachicos (Dancers) Gonzalo Gurguha
The Parachicos, or Parachico, are traditional dancers in the main celebration in Chiapa de Corzo, which takes place from
January 15 to 23
Chiapa de Corzo, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Allegory Ernesto Ríos
San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato
Index of Photographers
Dancers Bernardo de Niz
Teotitlán del Valle, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
My Teddy Armando Robles Calvario
Tonalá, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Tarahumara Roots Raúl Barajas
Norogachi, Guachochi, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Los engrasados (Ritual devils at Lent), from the series Dentro de la tierra (Deep in the land) Yael Martínez Velázquez
San Martín Tilcajete, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
Craftswoman Annick Donkers
San Andrés Cohamiata, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Maya Weaver Working Jipi Palm Iván Felipe Galíndez Ortegón
Calkiní, Campeche
Index of Photographers
Proud of His Creations Pamela Gutiérrez Valdez
Lagos de Moreno, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Appeal to the Lord of Justice José Kuri Orvañanos
San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Daybreak Adriana Carolina Palacios Galván
Day of the Dead photographic expedition
Pátzcuaro, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
Marigolds, from the series of the same name Toni Belles Ferragut
Oaxaca, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
A Family Lunch Esau Delgado Alvear
Teotihuacan, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Apparently Alejandro Aguirre Castellanos
Although it might not be clear, the image shows a wrestler who has gone to visit patients and offer them words of encouragement:
“You’re the real fighter,” he would say to them
Ignacio Chávez National Cardiology Institute, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
His Love Keeps Us Going Paola Zavaleta
Photo of the Give Love ministry, dedicated to taking joy, comfort, and hope to children with terminal illnesses
Pediatric Tower, Medical Center, Guadalajara, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Story Telling Guillermo Robles Oceguera
Social work involving story tellers and art teachers who brighten up the day for children
Community of Loma de Juárez, Colima
Index of Photographers
More Water than Land Jaime Arturo Ávalos Gómez
Frontera, Tabasco
Index of Photographers
Light Aircraft Flying over Sinforosa Brissa García
Sinforosa Canyon, Guachochi, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Chiapas Color Héctor Montes de Oca Flores
Inside the canistel (sapote tree)
Palenque National Park, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Inner Strength Adriana Lara Miranda
Chiapas Coast
Index of Photographers
The Seamstress Gustavo Esparza Gardea
Making final adjustments. It is worth mentioning that the main subject is the seamstress, who is a young woman with Down’s
Syndrome. Treating her like anyone else enables her to feel perfectly incorporated into daily life
Hidalgo del Parral, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Family Photo José Miguel Vargas Pellicer
Playa Caleta, Acapulco, Guerrero
Index of Photographers
Rural Life Jorge López Viera
In the small town of Acteal a group of children peek with curiosity through a gap in the wall of their small home with the image
of the patron saint of Mexico, the Virgin of Guadalupe
Acteal, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Always Together Abelardo de la Torre de la Mora
This couple walks home on the way back from the outdoor market. She is blind and he is her guide, carrying their purchases
Barrio del Artista, Puebla
Index of Photographers
The Familiar Tree Antonio Cervantes Durán
Eyipantla, Catemaco, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
La Pasión Izhar Gómez Flores
La Pasión, Baja California Sur
Index of Photographers
Typical Outings Mario Negrete
Lake Chapala, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
A Community of Pelicans Rafael Nuño Becerra
American White Pelican Sanctuary, La Ciénega Protected Natural Area, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
Riding the Wind Víctor Adrián Álvarez Rodríguez
Third International Balloon Festival
Archaeological Zone of Peralta, Abasolo, Guanajuato
Index of Photographers
Waking Up Roberto Flores Diego
The jaguar is the largest and most emblematic feline on the American continent. With its long history and mystical aura, it is
known in different guises by Mexico’s ethnic groups, who venerate it as a god and admire it for its extraordinary beauty. A
jaguar can live in almost any habitat; it likes to climb trees to rest and stalk its prey. Today this feline is protected by Mexican
law, because it is in danger of disappearing. Therefore, preserving its habitat is of vital importance, because it is a regulator
that maintains equilibrium in ecosystems
Miguel Álvarez del Toro Zoo, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Pink Flamingos Tania Escobar
In the Ría Lagartos reserve, groups of pink flamingos (Phoenicopterus ruber) congregate to feed. Protecting this region of the country, which is a key nesting and feeding area, has helped promote the preservation of this species in Mexico
Ría Lagartos Special Biosphere Reserve, Yucatán
Index of Photographers
Resplendent Quetzal Sergio Eduardo Moya
The resplendent quetzal (Pharomachrus mocinno) is the mystical bird venerated by the ancient peoples of Mesoamerica. Today
on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List, it has a “Near Threatened” conservation status. The
quetzal lives at high altitudes (1000 to 3000 m) in the dense cloud forests of Central America. I took this photo in the ZooMat
in Tuxtla Gutiérrez, the only place in the world where they are exhibited to the public (three females and two males). Here
twelve quetzals have been born so far. They are so well protected that around the cage they have running water to keep ants
out. Places such as this reproduction center give us all hope that with work and determination this species can be kept alive for
future generations
Miguel Álvarez del Toro Zoo, Tuxtla Gutiérrez, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Agave Dragon Lizeth Salas
San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato
Index of Photographers
The Mamut Kids Mag Servant
Grutas del Mamut (Mammoth Grottoes), San Cristóbal de las Casas, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Cuts 4, documentary project Fulvio Eccardi Ambrosi
At the base of the trunk, which can be up to a meter in diameter, the chiclero or chicle gatherer makes incisions with his machete
in the bark in a zigzag for the latex to drip
Maya rainforest in Campeche and Quintana Roo
Index of Photographers
Pilgrim Nelly Angélica Acosta Díaz
Cathedral of Puebla, Puebla
Index of Photographers
Close to the Land 8, documentary project Elizabeth Moreno Damm
Documentary project that explores fragments of culture and life on ranches on the southern Baja California peninsula, along
the Sierra de la Giganta. Heirs to a way of life and a culture that have shaped them for roughly 300 years, these ranchers preserve in their collective memory much of the peninsula’s history. It is a history that is gradually being lost with the sale of their
lands, migration to the city and towns, and the arrival of television
Sierra de la Giganta, Baja California Sur
Index of Photographers
Road to the Past Mónica Salazar Arriaga
Let’s return to the history of our roots
National Palace, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Dimensions Daniel Rodríguez Villa
Subway, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
The Last VW Bug Iago Leonardo Fernández-Cabrera
You can visit a museum in a different way. There are few underwater museums in the world. It is amazing and admirable that the
small locality of Isla Mujeres near Cancún can offer an interesting alternative to tourism activities typical of the zone.
This avant-garde project consists of a large number of changing sculptures that speak to us from the ocean bed
Underwater Museum of Art (MUSA), Cancún, Quintana Roo
Index of Photographers
You First, Then Me Javier Flores Cruz
Colima, Colima
Index of Photographers
The Hope of Mexico Gabriel Cardona Carrasco
El Chamizal Federal Public Park, Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Swans in Flight Raúl Aguilar Sibaja
Through study and discipline, young people exalt art and the beauty of synchrony on the foremost stages of Mexico
Carlos Lazo Theater, National University Campus, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Classical Youth Ericka Vanessa López Sánchez
Many young people feel drawn to classical music. This is seen in the number of children who go to the Ollin Yoliztli Cultural
Center after school for classes
Ollin Yoliztli Cultural Center, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Traditions Montserrat de los Ángeles Salcedo Alba
Encarnación de Díaz, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
An Offering of Flowers Karina Perla Enríquez Castro
Oaxaca, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
San Luis: A Place of Cantera, Metal, Sun and Cactus Ramón Moreno Carlos
Colors and shapes, light and shadow juxtaposing the work of nature and the human hand
Labyrinth of Sciences and the Arts Museum, San Luis Potosí
Index of Photographers
Turkey at Dusk Thor Edmundo Morales Vera
Fire and turkeys are emblems of Veracruz indigenous cuisine. Their time comes at dusk and supper is cooked on a bonfire in
the open air
Ixhuatlán de Madero, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
Dying to Live Ricardo Ruiz Cruz
To study the great diversity of our natural resources, it is necessary to capture, handle, and preserve specimens. Taxidermy
in Mexico is extremely important for any ecological or environmental impact study, where the foundations of knowledge,
research, and ecological education are established
Iztacalco, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Three Sisters César A. Salas Molina
The last sister to get married
Cancún, Quintana Roo
Index of Photographers
Push It! Eduardo Capdeville Cureño
The newlyweds and the bridesmaids prepare for a new photo shot. What they didn’t know was that another photographer was watching
them from a higher floor in the hotel and surely getting a much more interesting shot than the photographer on ground level
Veracruz, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
Summer Heat Gabriel Bravo
Relief from the summer heat in one of the fountains in the Alameda Park
Alameda Central, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Las Nubes Paola Migoya Graue
Las Nubes Ecotourism Center, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Life Miguel Ángel Rafael Gutiérrez y Porter
Lake Camécuaro, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
Everyone on the Way Home Miguel Antonio González González
Texmalaquilla, Atzitzintla, Puebla
Index of Photographers
The Samalayuca Dunes from the series The Mexican Landscape Ignacio Hernández Guevara
Juárez and Guadalupe, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Majestic and Disturbing Gerardo Quiroz Petersen
The volcano Popocatépetl as a national symbol is beautiful, majestic, and at the same time disturbing, just as Mexico, our country
North face of the volcano Popocatépetl, from the south of Iztaccíhuatl, on the border between the State of Mexico and Puebla
Index of Photographers
Going Places Jorge Leonardo Ramírez Ishitaka
A journey on the canals in Xochimilco at dawn
Xochimilco, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Choo Ha Cenote (Dripping Water) Hans Reinhard Bünger
A few kilometers from Cobá, in the Maya zone of Quintana Roo, I was able to capture this image that reminded me of the lithographs
by English explorer Frederick Catherwood, who visited the Yucatán peninsula in the nineteenth century. In one of his works
we can see an enormous stairway made of logs that descend into an underground cenote, while in the background several
locals are working. It is surprising to see a Maya family enjoying the fresh crystalline water, a perfect complement to show and
appreciate the cenote’s majesty
Cobá, Quintana Roo
Index of Photographers
The Good Rainy Season Alejandro Basan
An excited family waits for the image of the saint to pass by in procession to thank him for the good harvest with fireworks and
some of the harvest from this season
San Gaspar de las Flores, Tonalá, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Borrego Viudo (Taco Shop) María Montserrat Ortega Arriaga
Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Removing Gulf Corvina from Nets Carlos Aguilera Calderón
The gulf corvina is fished with nets cast to make “enclosures.” A pair of fishermen remove some recently caught corvinas
from the net
Gulf of Santa Clara, Baja California
Index of Photographers
From the series My Grandfather Used to Say to Me . . . Guillermo Nájera Ramos
My grandfather used to say to me that he who sacrifices waits and always is rewarded
Huixtán, Chiapas
Index of Photographers
Taxqueña Jean-Paul Krammer
Many Mexicans do not like to pose for photos. This habit of distancing oneself gives subjects an aura of eternity
Taxco, Guerrero
Index of Photographers
Street Sounds Carlos Jesús Alegría Ramírez
In the historic center of Mexico City, musicians strike up melodies to brighten the moment and to create a different mood
Manuel Tolsá Plaza, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
One September 15 Eric Scibor-Rylski
Chabacano Subway Station, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Free Love Fernando Manuel Escárcega Pérez
Ciudad Nezahualcóyotl, State of Mexico
Index of Photographers
Fireworks Abraham Escobedo Salas
Plaza de Armas (Central Square), Guadalajara, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Zocalo Surfing Ernesto Muñiz Apango
Someone attending a Lost Acapulco concert surfs on a sea of people in the Zocalo (central square) in Mexico City
Plaza de la Constitución (Central Square), Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Ironmen Marbella Heredia Castillejos
Art, strength, and the passion to conquer
Avenida Juárez, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
We Keep Standing Edmar Israel Pineda Gutiérrez
Mexico City, one sunny morning. Life continues for everyone
Avenida Juárez, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
In School Miguel Isidro Goñi Álvarez
Culiacán Rosales, Sinaloa
Index of Photographers
The Bike of Dreams David Adrián Mejía Velázquez
Manuel, dreaming of being a great professional cyclist
Guadalupe, Zacatecas
Index of Photographers
Mexican Horsemen César Rodríguez Becerra
They say that to be a good horseman, you have to learn to ride a horse before learning how to walk, and later, you ride a bull
before learning how to run
Lienzo Charro El Dorado, Tepic, Nayarit
Index of Photographers
Steady Adrián Dovalí Calderón
A lariateer plants himself firmly on the ground to stop the mare in her path
Lienzo Charro Santa Teresa, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Victory on Wheels Édgar Quintana Méndez
Aarón Gordián Martínez celebrates winning the 1500-meter race in the 2011 Parapan American Games 2011
Estadio de Atletismo (sports stadium), Zapopan, Jalisco
Index of Photographers
Luis Conrado Received a “Triunfador” on His Knees Víctor Ricardo Flores Estrada
On his knees Luis Conrado received Joselito Huerta’s 400-kilo bull, number 136, called “Triunfador” (Victor), in the center of the
ring without completing the passes that he had planned. Fourth Bullfight with a young bull in the summer young bullfighters
season in 2010 in the Plaza México ring
Plaza de Toros México, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Boxing Víctor Emiliano Solorio Reyes
Unidad Deportiva Venustiano Carranza, Morelia, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
Rules Never Are What’s Important Benito Armando Jiménez Benavides
Rarámuri children playing in the dirt with a soccer ball, wearing leather sandals or barefoot
Town of Inápuchi, Sierra Tarahumara, Chihuahua
Index of Photographers
Brave Workers Francisco Javier Maya Ramos
Offshore platform, Ciudad del Carmen, Campeche
Index of Photographers
Mexico’s Bread Verónica Ceme Cabrera
La Huachita bakery was established in 1889. From dawn, workers keep the oven stoked with wood to ensure the bread gets
that incomparable freshly baked flavor and fragrance, with the blends and spices that give each type its characteristic taste
Pomuch, Campeche
Index of Photographers
Agave Essences Fernando Arce Sánchez
Santa Catarina Minas, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
Brick Maker Enrique Rashide Serrato Frías
Since the age of 10, 42-year-old Abelardo Amaya has worked in brickworks. For him it is hard but satisfying work. Making bricks
becomes a craft process, because it takes several steps, most of which involve making them by hand
Culiacán, Sinaloa
Index of Photographers
Innocent Kiss Juan Jesús González Robles
Two strangers, two children, an instant. A girl stands stiffly with a lost gaze, while a boy unbeknownst to her goes up to give her a kiss
León, Guanajuato
Index of Photographers
Boy Wearing a Costume Sergio Barra de la Cruz
In the time of year when people celebrate Day of the Dead in Oaxaca, the different groups of people living near the state capital
form dance groups. One of the best organized parades is held in the town of Nazareno Etla. Participants wear elaborate costumes
and makeup alluding to characters related to death or beings from the beyond. On these days the townspeople go out onto the
street in groups to dance behind bands. The dance groups stop in some houses and dance for a few minutes and the owner of
the house gives all the participants food and drink. The attention to detail invested in the costumes truly deserves our admiration
Nazareno Etla, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
Spiritual Stories Mildred Goytia
The people who live on Urandén Island gather on the night of October 31 on the community sports grounds to attend the mass
of the dead, celebrated in Purépecha
Urandén de Morelos Island, Pátzcuaro, Michoacán
Index of Photographers
From Chipinque Francisco Muñoz Compean
A natural lookout on the climb up to Chipinque plateau. In the background appears part of San Pedro Garza García
San Pedro Garza García, Nuevo León
Index of Photographers
My Reflection Mario R. Serrano Becerril
Monument to the Revolution, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
The Little Horse Michel Gabriel Duffour
Paseo de la Reforma and Avenida Juárez, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
Washing the Washing Machine Francisco Javier Castro Elizondo
Santa Fe, Mexico City
Index of Photographers
If Only . . . Claudia Garza Hernández
Benito Juárez Market, Papantla de Olarte, Veracruz
Index of Photographers
The Market (or The Train Car or The Crate-Man) Denisse Pohls Pérez
An ordinary day, outside the market. The economy of families in the Mazatec sierra is based on self-sufficiency
Huautla de Jiménez, Oaxaca
Index of Photographers
The Enchantment of the Everyday Juan Pablo Cardona Medina
An everyday scene in a kitchen in Puebla, where important matters are resolved as the senses are seduced. Mexican cuisine,
even avant-garde types, is based on processes and dynamics that will never change
Tetela de Ocampo, Puebla
Index of Photographers
The Dunes of Magdalena Island Atonatiuh Sánchez Bracho
“My favorite place, Dad!” my son cried the first time he set foot on these impressive dunes
Isla Magdalena Natural Reserve, Baja California Sur
Index of Photographers
Michael Calderwood
Photographer, United Kingdom
Rosa Casanova
Art Historian, Mexico
Alejandro Castellanos
Photography expert, Mexico
Juan Coronel Rivera
Photographer and poet, Mexico
José Luis Cortés
Urban Planner, Mexico
Cándida Fernández de Calderón
General Director of Fomento Cultural Banamex, A. C., Mexico
Flor Garduño
Photographer, Mexico
Ellen Harris
Art and museum expert, United States
Graciela Iturbide
Photographer, Mexico
Teresa Siza
Historian and photographer, Portugal
Alejandro Tijerina
Photographer, Mexico
Eduardo Zapata Gosselin
Graphic Designer, Mexico
Index of Photographers
Acosta Díaz, Nelly Angélica
Enríquez Castro, Karina Perla
Aguilar Sibaja, Raúl
Equihua Barragán, Juan Carlos
Aguilera Calderón, Carlos
Escárcega Pérez, Fernando Manuel
Aguirre Castellanos, Alejandro
Escobar, Tania
Alday Larrauri, Enrique Arturo
Escobedo Salas, Abraham
Alegría Ramírez, Carlos Jesús
Esparza Gardea, Gustavo
Espino Ortiz, José Manuel
Álvarez Rodríguez, Víctor Adrián
Arce Sánchez, Fernando
32, 145
Fernández-Cabrera, Iago Leonardo
Ávalos Gómez, Jaime Arturo
Flores Cruz, Javier
Ayala Aguirre, Félix de Jesús
Flores Diego, Roberto
Barajas, Raúl
Flores Estrada, Víctor Ricardo
Barra de la Cruz, Sergio
Galíndez Ortegón, Iván Felipe
Basan, Alejandro
García, Brissa
Belles Ferragut, Toni
Boix Cisneros, Héctor
38, 63
Garza Hernández, Claudia
Gómez Flores, Izhar
Bolaños Escamilla, Alexandro
Gómez Reyes, Salvador
Bravo, Gabriel
González González, Miguel Antonio
Campillo Rodríguez, Rafael
González Robles, Juan Jesús
Capdeville Cureño, Eduardo
González Sánchez, Carlos Gustavo
Carbajal Quintana, Miguel Ángel
Goñi Álvarez, Miguel Isidro
Cárdenas Palacios, María Alejandra
Goytia, Mildred
Cardona Carrasco, Gabriel
Gurguha, Gonzalo
Cardona Medina, Juan Pablo
Gutiérrez y Porter, Miguel Ángel Rafael
Castillo Bautista, Danae
Gutiérrez Valdez, Pamela
Castro Elizondo, Francisco Javier
Heredia Castillejos, Marbella
Ceme Cabrera, Verónica
Hernández Guevara, Ignacio
Cervantes Durán, Antonio
Hernández Hernández, Jesús Lorenzo
Corasaniti, Paola
Jandette Cruz, Ricardo
Delgado Alvear, Esau
Jiménez Benavides, Benito Armando
Donkers, Annick
Jiménez Castro, José Francisco
Dovalí Calderón, Adrián
Krammer, Jean-Paul
Duffour, Michel Gabriel
Kuri Orvañanos, José
Eccardi Ambrosi, Fulvio
Lara Miranda, Adriana
López Fernández, Andrea
Rivera Lezama, Luis Felipe
López Sánchez, Ericka Vanessa
Robles Calvario, Armando
López Viera, Jorge
Robles Oceguera, Guillermo
Magaña Rodríguez, Benjamín
Rodríguez Becerra, César
Martínez Velázquez, Yael
Rodríguez Villa, Daniel
Maya Ramos, Francisco Javier
Mejía Sandoval, Josué
Rodríguez Zavala, César
Rojo, Alejandro
Mejía Velázquez, David Adrián
Rosas Rodríguez, Miguel Antonio
Migoya Graue, Paola
Ruiz Cruz, Ricardo
Montes de Oca Flores, Héctor
Salas, Lizeth
Morales Vera, Thor Edmundo
Salas Molina, César A.
Salazar Arriaga, Mónica
Sánchez Bracho, Atonatiuh
Moya, Sergio Eduardo
Santos Espinosa, Rosa María
Moyrón Contreras, Teúl
Salcedo Alba, Montserrat de los Ángeles
Muñiz Apango, Ernesto
Saldaña Tejeda, Abel Gastón
Muñoz Compean, Francisco
Saravia Mejía, Felipe
Nájera Ramos, Guillermo
Scibor-Rylski, Eric
Negrete, Mario
Serrano Becerril, Mario R.
Niz, Bernardo de
Serrato Frías, Enrique Rashide
Nuño Becerra, Rafael
Servant, Mag
Silva, Ariel
Moreno Carlos, Ramón
Moreno Damm, Elizabeth
Ortega Arriaga, María Montserrat
Palacios Galván, Adriana Carolina
Simón, Alex
Pérez Aparicio, Ana Laura
Solorio Reyes, Víctor Emiliano
Pineda Gutiérrez, Edmar Israel
Pohls Pérez, Denisse
48, 155
Suárez Salazar, Max
Torre Martínez de Escobar, José de Jesús de la
Quintana Méndez, Édgar
Torre de la Mora, Abelardo de la
Quiroz Petersen, Gerardo
Vaquero Cruz, María Teresa
Ramírez Ishitaka, Jorge Leonardo
Vargas Pellicer, José Miguel
Reinhard Bünger, Hans
Verdier, Eric 164
Rendón Elías, Felipe Gerardo
Xólot, Édgar
Reynada, César Javier
Zavaleta, Paola
Ríos, Ernesto
Banamex 130 Years Prize 26
Social Commitment Prize
First Place Color
Honorable Mention Social Commitment
Second Place Color
Honorable Mention Social Commitment
Third Place Color
Fomento Cultural Banamex Prize
First Place Black and White
Fomento Cultural Banamex Honorable Mention
Second Place Black and White
Fomento Cultural Banamex Honorable Mention
Third Place Black and White
Fomento Ecológico Banamex Prize
Honorable Mention General
Honorable Mention Fomento Ecológico Banamex
Honorable Mention General
Honorable Mention Fomento Ecológico Banamex
Honorable Mention General
Mexican Children Prize
Honorable Mention General
Honorable Mention Mexican Children
Honorable Mention General
Honorable Mention Mexican Children
Jury Prize
Contemporary Mexico Prize
Honorable Mention Jury Prize
Honorable Mention Contemporary Mexico
Honorable Mention Jury Prize
Honorable Mention Contemporary Mexico
Mexican Family Prize
Honorable Mention Banamex Collaborator
Honorable Mention Mexican Family
Honorable Mention Banamex Collaborator
Honorable Mention Mexican Family
Honorable Mention Banamex Collaborator
Competition Credits
Catalogue Credits
Project Coordinator
Cándida Fernández de Calderón
Project Coordination
Cándida Fernández de Calderón
Artistic Director
Michael Calderwood
Rosa Casanova
Sergio Raúl Arroyo
Fomento Cultural Banamex Liaisons
Ignacio Monterrubio Salazar
María de los Ángeles Camacho Gaos
Alejandro Reynaud Gutiérrez
José Manuel Ampudia Pinal
Banco Nacional de México Liaisons
Digital Marketing
César Emilio Monzón García
Montserrat Nava Hurtado
Benjamín I. Franco Alvarado
Gabriela Gutiérrez Delgado
Ana Sofía Luna Espinosa
Publications Coordination
Carlos Monroy Valentino
Arturo López Rodríguez
Logistics, Liaison, and Photography Management
Alejandro Reynaud Gutiérrez
José Manuel Ampudia Pinal
Graphic Design
Printt Diseñadores
Eduardo Zapata Gosselin
Debra Nagao
Gabriela Galindo Cajiga
Víctor Acevedo Ortuño
Copyediting (English)
Anne Hill de Mayagoitia
Legal Matters
Heidy Muñoz González
Lorena Montoya Miranda
Electronic Typesetting
Gabriela Ontiveros
Daniel Ramírez
Digital Prepress
Firma Corporativa, S. C.
Juan Carlos Almaguer Vega
Emmanuel Torices
Photographic Reproduction
LMI Laboratorio Mexicano de Imágenes
Graphic Design
Eduardo Zapata Gosselin
Outreach and Social Networks
Andrea Acevedo Rodríguez
Elena Pietrini Sánchez
Publications Management
Ana Diego-Fernández Rozada
Karen Hernández Villegas
Fabiola Muñoz Uribe
Yadira Ivonne Vázquez Jiménez
Banco Nacional de México and Fomento Cultural Banamex would like to express their recognition for the individuals whose valuable collaboration made the project Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II possible.
We are grateful for the numerous visions presented by 24,789 photographers, including aficionados and professionals from Mexico and other countries, who participated in the competition Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II.
The present volume was produced on the basis of the images awarded prizes and honorable mentions by the jury
from the corpus of 1,200 photographs that now form the collection Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II, which in turn
were selected from the 52,917 photographs submitted for participation.
Banco Nacional de México, S.A.
Manuel Medina Mora
Ernesto Torres Cantú
Andrés Albo Márquez
Diego Cosío Barto
Arturo Martínez del Campo
Jordi Adame
Elizabeth Losada Alfaro
Rómulo Caballeros
Juan José Maas Moreno
Diego Carrera
Omar Medina López
Arturo Contreras Barba
Verónica Novelo
Regina Gómez Zertuche
Mariana Peña Rubio
Fernando Guido
Susana Wendolin Ramos García
Mariana Julieta Guzmán Gómez Aguado
Rosalía Mayela Rasgado
Erika Hernández Garduño
Gabriela Recio Cavazos
Arleen Holden
Manuel Reynaud Aveleyra
Carolina Lagunas García
Ana Elena Ruiz Ávila
Patricia Lechuga Moreno
Amelia Sánchez Vargas
Donaji Lobato
Ana de la Serna
Mercedes López Arrieta
María Luisa Valdivia Flores
Jorge López López
Family Eric Verdier Estación Catorce, San Luis Potosí
The digital version of Mexico in the Eyes of Mexicans II was published under the supervision of Carlos Monroy Valentino and Arturo
López Rodríguez. The Gotham typeface family was used in this edition.

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