Indigenous People of San Cristóbal

Although she considers herself primary a black & white photographer, the vibrant colors of the flora & fauna, combined with the richly decorated architecture of town of San Cristóbal de Las Casas in the state of Chiapas in Mexico, inspired Joan Rosenstein to make a portfolio of color photographs. She was particularly attracted to the expressive, weather-beaten faces of the people she encountered and loved the textural contrasts and beautiful colors of the native dress. The juxtaposition of traditional dress with American sneakers, jeans & tee shirts favored by younger Mexicans was both exotic and familiar.

The images in this portfolio consist of portraits of indigenous models photographed in front of a background set up in front of Church of Bario del Cerrillo in San Cristóbal de Las Casas. Some people were extremely shy & unsure of what to do, while others enjoyed the limelight and became "hams". In an attempt to capture the personality of each individual, Rosenstein did not suggest how the models should pose.