Los Menonos

Ruiz Cirera, Jordi
Publisher: Editions du Lic
Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 104
Measurements: 30.00 x 21.50 cm

The debut volume from the Spanish photographer Jordi Ruiz Cirera presented in a limited edition hardback book. This first edition is limited to 750 copies.

Comprising of images taken between 2010 and 2011 in the Mennonite colonies of Santa Cruz, in Eastern Bolivia, Los Menonos presents a portrait of a community of self-styled, self-willed outsiders that have voyaged out into the wilderness of a foreign land to escape that which may yet prove to be inescapable: the inexorable encroachment of global capitalism and its implicit disdain for those that do not partake of its market-driven values. Ruiz Cirera’s sometimes stark, sometimes luminous, images convey all the stillness and austerity of the Bolivian Mennonites who – in a perhaps surprising act of faith – put their trust in him. He has more than repaid that trust and, out of such stark simplicity, created a rich and evocative portrait of a self-contained people and their singular way of life.

Ruiz Cirera’s images have a sense of quiet yet powerful intimacy with a consistency of vision, both formal and atmospheric, that suggest a photographer already possessed of a singular style. Within the pages of Los Menonos one senses an enclosed community slowly opening up to the photographer’s persuasive presence. He captures children fast asleep on a bare wooden floor, a woman and girl running hand in hand along a dusty road, men and women working the arid, dusty land with little recourse to modern machinery and gatherings of people, both public and domestic. Out of all this emerges a sense of the slow rhythm of life in a place where the distractions and discontents of the contemporary world are held at bay by an adherence to a faith that holds fast to simplicity, hard work, communality and the need to keep at a distance all the myriad temptations of that distracting, discontented world.

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