Enrique Metinides /

Metinides attributes his style of photography to cinema. He grew up watching Hollywood movies as well as Mexican films. He loved comedy and noir; from Laurel and Hardy and Cantinflas, to Dolores del Río and Al Capone. “I lived on a street with three cinemas. It only cost a few pesos to go to the matinees. I would skip school and immerse myself in gangster films, sitting in the front row absorbing everything I saw. I learnt about drama and light from watching these films. I began taking pictures in a way no one else was. I would look at a crime scene as if I were watching a movie. I would photograph not only the body, but the detectives at their work, too, elegantly dressed in their hats, suits, and ties. I would try to capture the whole scene in a single frame–not just the corpse or the weapon, but the entire story. I would arrive soon after the police, but nothing would have moved. These were crime scenes.”

The decisive moment in Metinides’ work is the moment of impact–that split second, which will or will not change destiny–rather than the action of taking the photograph. The photographs come later; they are, if anything, delayed decisive moments. “The scene had to remain exactly as it was, time would be suspended, so that the forensic detectives could do their work. It gave me the room to compose my photographs. Once, I received a letter from someone who had seen my work in London, asking me who the actors were. They thought my photographs were staged! I never staged anything; I just took my time.” Metinides’ photographs are crafted with cinematic precision and style, yet his compassion for the victims is never far away. He feels a deep moral responsibility towards those left behind. In describing the events and their participants, his commentaries are straightforward and without any hint of cynicism. He remembers in detail the names, characters, and narratives behind the photographs. It is this obsession with remembering that gives his images their humanity, and ensures that the sufferings of those who appear in them do not merely end up as statistics or yesterday’s news. “Sometimes I would come home and just weep after the things I had seen. It always left an impression. I never forgot.”


2007 Servin, Juan Manuel. “El fotógrafo de cadáveres”. Universal. Suplemento día siete, México, D.F. 
2007 “Un fotógrafo con olfato para los desastres”. El País, España
2007 Villasmil, Alejandra. “Enrique Metinides, el fotógrafo del desastre debuta con una exposición en Nueva York”. El mundo, España
2007 Mateos-Vega, Mónica. “Sorprenden en EU imágenes de Enrique Metinides  sobre hechos policiales”. La Jornada, México, D.F. 
2006 Kimmelman, Michael, “Pulp Nonfiction, ripped from the Tabloids”. The New York Times
2005 Casco Sosa, David. “Pasión por la nota roja”. Impacto el Diario, México, D.F. 
2005 Jiménez, Carlos “Betting on photographic narratives”. Art Nexus, no. 55


2013 101 Tragedies of Enrique Metinides, Aperture Gallery, curator Trisha Ziff, New York, United States
2012 Enrique Metinides SERIES. Kominek Gallery, curator Veronique Ricardoni, Berlín, Germany
2011 Enrique Metinides-101 tragedies. Rencontre d’Arles Photographie, Arles, France
2010 Enrique Metinides. En el lugar de concidencia. Garash Galería, Colonia Roma, México, D.F.
2008 Enrique Metinides: Rare Vintage Photographs, Josée Bienvenu Gallery, New York, United States


1996 El espejo de luz. II Bienal de Fotoperiodismo. Mexico City.


2013 Falsefakes. Vrai faux semblants. Centre de la Photographie Gèneve, Ginebra, Francia
2012 Antonio Caballero, Graciela Iturbide, Enrique Metinides, Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto, Ontario
2012 Photography in Mexico: Selected works from the collections of SFMOMA, SFMOMA, San Francisco, California, United States
2008 New Perspectives in Latin American, 1930-2006: Selections from a Decade of Acquisitions, Museum of Modern Art (MOMA), New York, United States
2007 La Planta. Arte Contemporáneo Omnilife, Guadalajara, México
2006 The Exotic Journey Ends. Foksal Gallery Foundation, Varsovia, Polonia
2006 NRW forum Kultur and Wirtschaft, Duesseldorf, Alemania
2004 Dedicated to a Proposition. Extra City: Center for Contemporary Art, Antwerp, Bélgica
2004 Photo España, Casa de América, Madrid, España