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PRINT Summer 2019

PHOTOGRAPHY

EYES TO FLY WITH

Graciela Iturbide, Nuestra Señora de las Iguanas (Our Lady of the Iguanas), 1979, gelatin silver print, 10 × 8".

GRACIELA ITURBIDE’S formidable photographic oeuvre testifies to how inextricable Mexican identity is from the experiences of colonization and religious syncretism. Her images are repeatedly described as poetic, and they certainly operate metonymically, making parts stand for a whole. Her exquisite four-decade retrospective at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston functioned similarly: “Graciela Iturbide’s Mexico” homed in on series the artist made in specific regions of her native country, capturing, among other subjects, Zapotec women and muxes (who identify as transgender women, or as a third gender) in Juchitán, Oaxaca; slaughtering rituals in la Mixteca, also in Oaxaca; and the Seri Indians in the Sonoran desert.

It is bitterly ironic that the Mexico Iturbide’s camera finds most compelling is represented by indigenous peoples, who—since a brief utopian postrevolutionary moment in

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