“The unconscious obsession that we photographers have is that wherever we go we want to find the theme that we carry inside ourselves…”


Graciela Iturbide was born in Mexico City, the oldest of 13 children. She studied at the Centro de Estudios Cinematográficos at the Universidad Nacional Autónama de México where she met her mentor and teacher, the Mexican modernist cinematographer and photographer,  Manuel Álvarez Bravo, who was teaching at the University. She worked as his assistant in the early 1970’s, accompanying him on his various photographic journeys throughout Mexico. Along with Álvarez Bravo, Iturbide was also inspired by the photography of Josef Koudelka, Henri Cartier-Bresson, and Sebastio Salgado.

Iturbide’s work has been celebrated in solo exhibitions at the Centre Pompidou (1982), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (1990), Philadelphia Museum of Art (1997), J. Paul Getty Museum (2007), MAPFRE Foundation, Madrid (2009), Photography Museum Winterthur (Zurich) (2009), and Barbican Art Gallery, London (2012), among many others.

Iturbide is the recipient of the W. Eugene Smith Memorial Foundation Award, 1987; the Grand Prize Mois de la Photo, Paris, 1988; a Guggenheim Fellowship for the project ‘Fiesta y Muerte’, 1988; the Hugo Erfurth Award, Leverkusen, Germany, 1989; the International Grand Prize, Hokkaido, Japan, 1990; the Rencontres Internationales de la Photographie Award, Arles, 1991; the Hasselblad Award, 2008; the National Prize of Sciences and Arts in Mexico City in 2008; an Honorary Degree in photography from the Columbia College Chicago in 2008; and an Honorary Doctorate of Arts from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2009.


Jardin Botanico, Oaxaca, 2000
Silver Gelatin Print
16 x 20 inches sheet