La Batalla de Puebla by Alfredo Estrella

Written by Joshua Zamudio / Curated by Sergio Clavel
Photographs by Alfredo Estrella 
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There are many misconceptions on why Cinco De Mayo is celebrated. On the 5th of May, 1862 the Mexican Army fought gallantly against the French Army during the Second French Intervention in Mexico. Unequipped and largely outnumbered, the Mexican army defeated the French Army and their advancements. The Victory from this battle would bring a significant boost in morale for the Mexican Army to continue the fight. Most people think about Cinco de Mayo as an excuse to have a day off, drink some beers and eat Mexican food. But the reality of the fact is a day to remember and celebrate those who fought courageously to protect their ideals and beliefs. Every year in the City of Mexico, in a "Barrio" called Peñon de los Banos, Hundreds of people dress up and participate in an organized reenactment of the Battle of Puebla. Unfortunately this year, 2020, This event was cancelled due to the unprecedented times of Covid-19.
Photographer  Alfredo Estrella documented previous years of the reenactment and shares with us a glimpse of how Mexico celebrates Cinco De Mayo.  - Joshua Zamudio
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"La Batalla de Puebla, es la representación que se realiza 
cada 5 de mayo en el barrio llamado Peñon de los Baños en la Ciudad de México." - Alfredo Estrella
(Spanish)

Ciudad de México. 2020.

"A diferencia de años pasados, este 5 de mayo de 2020 los fotógrafos que cubrimos la representación de la Batalla de Puebla (hecho histórico entre el ejército francés comandando por Napoleón y los indígenas zacapuaxtlas bajo la orden del general Ignacio Zaragoza en el año de 1862), hemos tenido que cambiar los tapones de oídos para aislar el ruido por cubrebocas, caretas y googles para hacer imágenes del día a día del Covid-19.

El primer año que cubrí la representación de la batalla de Puebla fue en 1995 y el material de ese año era análogo. Con el paso del tiempo llegue a trabajar a la Agencia France Presse (AFP) para la oficina de Mexico y ahí comencé por el año 2001 a cubrir la representación de esta batalla con cámaras digitales.

Es una fiesta que inicia a las 10 de la mañana y va terminando después de las 6 de la tarde, con su respectivo break para el almuerzo. Música, alcohol y disparos de salva acompañan a los cientos de participantes a unos metros del aeropuerto internacional de la Ciudad de México." - Alfredo Estrella

(English)

Mexico City. 2020.

"Unlike in past years, on May 5, 2020 the photographers who covered the representation of the Battle of Puebla (historical fact between the French army commanding by Napoleon and the Zacapuaxtlas indigenous people under the command of General Ignacio Zaragoza in the year 1862) We have had to change the earplugs to isolate the noise by covering mouthpieces, masks and goggles to make everyday images of the Covid-19.

The first year that I covered the representation of the Battle of Puebla was in 1995 and the material for that year was similar. As time went by, I came to work at the Agence France Presse (AFP) for the Mexico office and there I began in 2001 to cover the representation of this battle with digital cameras.

It is a party that starts at 10 in the morning and ends after 6 in the afternoon, with its respective break for lunch. Music, alcohol, and salvo shots accompany the hundreds of participants a few meters from the Mexico City international airport." - Alfredo Estrella

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All photographs owned and contributed by Alfredo Estrella. 

1 comment

Casey DeCotis

Well done! Fantastic images and point of view. Cheers!

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