¡Vámonos! Bernard Plossu in México
1965-66, 1970, 1974, 1981Photographs by Bernard Plossu
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For more than fifteen years, French photographer Bernard Plossu took extended trips to Mexico to photograph people, landscapes, and a culture in flux. ¡Vámanos! Bernard Plossu in México captures the bohemian adventure of this traveler’s four journeys, the first in 1965–66 and the last in 1981. His black-and-white and color images have transfixed generations of young people in France, who cherish him in the way young Americans celebrate Jack Kerouac. Plossu’s romantic vision encompasses coquettish women, peasants at work, fog-wrapped trails in the jungle, and waves lapping at sandy beaches. Yet Plossu is also aware of poverty and the challenges facing a modernizing society, and his photographs capture the nobility of all his subjects. Along with more than three hundred photographs, organized into chapters representing each of his Mexican journeys, this first compilation of Plossu’s Mexican work includes an essay by prominent French photo editor Claude Nori that highlights Plossu’s vagabond spirit. Additional commentaries are provided by renowned writers, including the book’s editor, Salvador Albiñana, and Emmanuel Guigon, Francisco Salinas, Alfonso Morales, and José Agustín.
Bernard Plossu (born in Dalat, South Vietnam, 1945) has traveled extensively through a life in photography, including in the jungles of Chiapas in Mexico, the American West, India, the Aeolian Islands, and Niger. Widely regarded as a leading figure in French photography, Plossu’s photographs have been exhibited internationally, including at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago; Musée National d’Art Moderne, Paris; Centre Pompidou, Paris; Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno, Valencia, Spain; and Strasbourg Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, France. He has published numerous books, including Le Voyage Mexicain: L’integral, 1956–1966 (1979), African Desert (1987), Forget Me Not (2002), Bernard Plossu’s New Mexico (2006), and Europa (2011). In 2008 he was the recipient of the CRAF International Award of Photography. Salvador Albiñana (editor) is well-known as an author of Mexico Illustrated 1920–1950, as well as for his work on several other publications on the history of art, design, and photography in Mexico.