I have been hearing a fair amount of whispering of late about Martin Parr's forthcoming project on Latin American photobooks, which will, "with one book, completely re-evaluate how people think about Latin America". Whether it can live up to these lofty ambitions remains to be seen, but with Parr in the driving seat, there is no doubt that we can expect to see an explosion of interest in Latin American photography next year. So in an attempt to stay ahead of the curve, I'm featuring this 2004 book on Mexican photography, Mexico D.F. The book is about the city of Mexico and doesn't stick strictly Mexican photography (Jean-Marc Bustamente and Miguel Rio Branco are amongst the guest appearances). It covers a lot of ground and the quality of the work included is uneven, but for me, aside from the better known photographers like Iturbide or Metinides, the book's strength are its hidden gems, like Romero's cut-out cast of characters. Like all of Toluca's books, the design is impeccable, but I would have liked to have more resources beyond a 2-line bio for each photographer. If you're looking for an introduction to one of the big photographic nations of Latin America, you could do a lot worse... for the moment anyhow.
Mexico, D.F. with work by Ivan Alechine, Mauricio Alejo, Mario Bellatin, Jean-Marc Bustamente, Antonio Caballero, Miguel Calderón, M. A. Cruz, Milagros de la Torre, Héctor García, Maya Goded, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Lourdes Grobet, Graciela Iturbide, Toni Kuhn, David Levinthal, Leo Matiz, Pablo Ortiz Monasterio, Enrique Metinides, Arturo Ortega, Miguel Rio Branco, Santiago Sierra, José Trinidad Romero, Paris: Toluca Project (Hardcover, 256 pages, B&W and colour plates, text in French and English).
Update: Book of the week is moving to eyecurious books etc. Look out for new picks there!