Mexico at the Hour of Combat: Sabino Osuna’s Photographs of the Mexican Revolution
edited by Ronald Chilcote
2012, 10 1/2” x 11 1/4”, 120 pages, 103 photographs
The Mexican Revolution, the first major revolution of the twentieth century, intertwined with photography attracted worldwide attention. Its visual documentation was made possible by Sabino Osuna who played a crucial role in not only photographing the different phases of the Mexican Revolution, but he also captured portraits of prominent persons involved in it. The focus of this volume is Osuna’s special collection, 427 images, currently held in Special Collections in the Rivera Library of the University of California, Riverside.
The Sabino Osuna Collection was acquired for the UC Riverside Library in January 1986. Shortly after its acquisition, the Committee of Latin American Studies decided to publish a selection of Osuna’s photographs along with essays about them. However, it was unable to gather the necessary support for its publication. Nevertheless, we have successfully achieved our objective to publish with the essential support of a number of institutions and individuals. Mexico at the Hour of Combat depicts the history of the Mexican Revolutionary era through the use of photography. The Osuna images highlight the impact of the Revolution and the importance of the personalities of the dominant class, but most importantly; the images abstractly reveal the Mexican conception of their national identity.
The book’s publication was facilitated through the collaborative financial and human support of the UC Riverside Library; the University of California Institute for Mexico and the United States; the bimonthly journal Latin American Perspectives; the independent nonprofit Laguna Wilderness Press; the Culver Center for the Arts; and the Sweeney Art Gallery.
The book includes essays about Osuna and his photographs by Peter Briscoe, Ronald Chilcote, Carlos Cortés, Georg Gugelberger, Eliud Martinez, and Tyler Stallings.
- 2012, 10 1/2” x 11 1/4”, 120 pages, 103 photographs
- ISBN: 978097284481
- Mexico at the Hour of Combat: Sabino Osuna’s Photographs of the Mexican Revolution
“The Sabino Osuna Collection is powerful testimony to the incidents of the armed struggle in the Valley of Mexico, the epicenter of political change, but, more important, it narrates the daily affairs of the different social classes in and around Mexico City. This is what makes the book so powerful; there is an eerie appeal in the images of all these men and women going about their daily lives while their world was about to change irreversibly.”
Exequiel Ezcurra Director
“Osuna’s striking pictures of key actors and events of the revolutionary period amplify our vision of the formative years of modern Mexico. Beautifully printed here, the photographs are accompanied by clear, straightforward essays that contextualize them in terms of the present day meaning of the Mexican Revolution and the photographic culture of early-twentieth-century Mexico. Mexico at the Hour of Combat is an important historical document in its own right and a fitting tribute by the University of California, Riverside, to the Revolution’s centenary.”
Jan Rus Associate Managing Editor
Latin American Perspectives
“The poignant work of the photographer Sabino Osuna, which this book honors and celebrates, tell the story of the Mexican Revolution in a way that words alone could not. On the occasion of the collection’s publication, it is fitting to call attention to the efforts of two prime movers: Ronald H. Chilcote, Professor Emeritus of Economics, who was persistent in seeking funding over the years, and Peter Briscoe, former Associate University Librarian for Collections, who acquired the photographs on behalf of the University of California, Riverside, Libraries in 1986.”
Ruth M Jackson, Ph. D. University Librarian
University of California, Riverside, Libraries