Brigitte Grignet

Location: Liege, Belgium
Nationality: Belgian/American
Biography: Brigitte Grignet is a Belgian photographer focusing in a more personal type of documentary photography. She studied photography at the International Center of Photography in New York, where she lived for 15 years. She worked with Mary Ellen Mark... read on
Public Story
Credits: brigitte grignet
Date of Work: 07/24/19 - Ongoing
Updated: 09/24/19
Location: OAXACA
After the years spent with Mary Ellen Mark, Mexico only existed in black and white in my world. It was inhabited by little girls with big dresses, circus acrobats, and lots of dogs.
When I was invited in Oaxaca for an artist residency in 2018, I felt I was going back to a familiar place.

About 400 kilometers south of Mexico City, Oaxaca claims its indigenous culture. The past is everywhere, and the circles of time seem to invite the visitor to forget corruption, violence, migration, -but the dramatic Mexican news is never very far away. Social inequalities regularly push people on the street.

But these days it all felt quiet. There was the intense light, the lush vegetation, music and seductive colors everywhere. André Breton wrote that “the power of conciliating life and death” was “the main attraction that lures us to Mexico.” Country of surrealism, imaginary and mystery, Mexico accepts its contradictions. Between memory and oblivion, people go about their everyday life, beyond illusions of themselves and elsewhere.

I often ran away from the tourist crowded streets of the center and escaped to the Sierra, to the mountains. The hours spent in buses and collectivos invited to contemplation. Light was changing. My stomach hurt. There was a timeless feeling to the way mothers walked and carried children. I woke up at the sound of teenagers playing traditional songs on their violin. Endless dreams, without melancholy.

I love beginnings.

By Brigitte Grignet —



By Brigitte Grignet — In 2016 I set off to explore Poland, after a conversation I had with a Polish friend, who was wondering about the future of her country...

Colombia-El Corazón del Mundo

By Brigitte Grignet — In the Sierra Nevada, in the northern mountains of Colombia, the guerilla is hiding. The paramilitary is looking for them. 18-year-old soldiers..

The Children of the Sea

By Brigitte Grignet — IBIS was created in 1906 by King Albert in Ostend (Belgium) to offer a home and a maritime school to orphan boys whose father had perished at sea...

The Damned and the Beautiful

By Brigitte Grignet — Aysén, Chile, a region of some 92.000 souls, sits in one of the most remote and undisturbed areas of the world. Its ecosystem is among the most..

New York-This is not America

By Brigitte Grignet — I said: “New York is not America”. He laughed sarcastically. I hung up. No point. Great timing for breaking up, I thought, today I just..


By Brigitte Grignet — There is always a persistent noise, somewhere, despite the neverending quest for being fully in the present. Today I am escaping my to-do lists and..


By Brigitte Grignet — The sound of the muezzin at four am. Some sheep grazing in the meager fields at the outskirts of the city. The smell of coffee with cardamom. In..

Here & Now

By Brigitte Grignet — Within me, I have childhood memories and frozen moments. From evenings spent looking at family albums, these fragments of life remain. I know the..

Troubled Life-Northern Ireland

By Brigitte Grignet — « Going to Derry is like traveling to an exotic country, » Anne says. Anne lives in Letterkenny, in the Republic of Ireland, 35 kms from Derry,..

Welcome 2016

By Brigitte Grignet — WELCOME Since the dawn of time people have migrated. There are now more displaced people and refugees than at any other time in recorded history...

Chiloé-La Cruz del Sur

By Brigitte Grignet — In 1974, I was six. I was in Belgium and I had never heard words such as “exile” or “dictatorship.” My mother had a pupil,..
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