About the Photographer
Mostly shot in the Zocalo, Mexico City's bustling central square, Yolanda Andrade's photographs capture what she describes as "Mexican passion": the vitality of the people who use the space as a point of daily contact for revelry, ritual, and protest. In her pictures of cultural traditions such as the annual Day of the Dead celebration, mythical figures from ancient Aztec folklore intermingle with 16th century Spanish Christian influences, comprising the vibrant and unique culture that exists today. As Andrade described her work in 2002: “These photographs are part of a personal project about Mexico City which will take an extended period of time to complete. My project is to see Mexico City from a very personal point of view, to envision it as if I were making a visual diary, with my comments about politics, womanhood, machismo, religion, traditions, sexual mores, social attitudes, the imagination of the common person, high art and popular culture. It is not only the city of my daily life, the one I live in as a woman and as a professional photographer, but also the city of my imagination, the protagonists of works of fiction, the scenery where different stories happen at the same time.”
Andrade was born in Villahermosa, Tabasco, Mexico, in 1950, and moved to Mexico City in 1968. She studied photography at the Visual Studies Workshop in Rochester,
NY (1976-1977), and has worked as a photographer since 1977. She is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship (1994) and several grants from the National Endowment for Culture and the Arts (FONCA) in Mexico to fund photographic and publishing projects (1993, 1997, 2000, 2003). Andrade has exhibited extensively in Mexico, the United States, and Europe, including over twenty-five solo shows. Her work is held in the collections of the Visual Studies Workshop, Rochester, NY; California Museum of Photography, Riverside, CA; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX; the Southwestern and Mexican Photography Collection, Texas State University-San Marcos; and Kiyosato Museum of Photographic Arts, Japan, among others. Monographs include Los velos transparentes, las transparencias veladas (1988), Pasión Mexicana/Mexican Passion (2002), Melodrama barroco (2007), and A través del cristal (2008). Andrade lives in Mexico City.