Magnolia, Juchitán, México
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After studying to be a filmmaker, Graciela Iturbide turned to photography and launched her career as Manuel Álvarez Bravo’s assistant. She traveled around Mexico, documenting the lives and customs of the country’s Indigenous peoples. Iturbide met the subject of this portrait, Magnolia, in Juchitán, a town in the state of Oaxaca where the existence of three genders is widely accepted by the Zapotec people. Magnolia is a Muxe—someone assigned male at birth but who identifies neither as male nor female. After asking to be photographed, Magnolia chose outfits to wear and applied makeup, thus thoroughly dictating how to be seen. The handheld mirror seems to be a nod to the multiplicity of Magnolia’s identity.