Happy New Year and welcome to 2021. Twenty twenty is finally in the books and perhaps we can all have a sigh of relief.
Anyway I am very happy to announce that we have declared that 2021 will be the Year of Women Street Photographers.
So each month during the year we are choosing a woman to be the featured photographer of the month. And our first issue of the year, which will be published on January 15th, will feature street photography created by all women.
Our guest this week is Keith Dannemiller, an American photojournalist who has been living and working in Mexico City for the past 30 plus years.
Keith is no stranger to Street Photography Magazine. He was the featured photographer in September 2016 and has contributed content to the magazine and podcast over the years. So it was good to catch up with him to see what he’s up to during the pandemic.
Keith is currently independent, but over the past 31 years he was associated with two US photo agencies: Black Star and Saba. In Latin America, he has covered a wide variety of situations, ranging from Nicaraguan Recontras to street children in México City to life on the US-México border and the evolution of a refugee camp in the Mexican state of Chiapas into a thriving community today.
As a photojournalist he covered the First Intifata in the occupied territories of Palestine the late 1980s. In our interview Keith told me the story behind this assignment and how he came to cover an event on the other side of the world and how it became a book project 30 years later.
That’s right, he’s currently working on two books at the same time.
My favorite project of Keith’s is about LaBestia, which means The Beast. It’s the nickname for a freight train that travels from the southern Mexican border through the length of the country to the US border over 1600 miles away. Hundreds of migrants, men, women and children, escaping economic hardship and gang violence in Central America risk their lives riding atop the freight cars. He uses his camera and heart to tell a powerful story of desperation and hope for a better life.
He lives with his wife in the Colonia Nápoles of Mexico City and often conducts street photo tours of this unique metropolis.
You will learn this and more when you listen to my conversation with Keith Dannemiller.