Zeitgeist: Thalía Gochez

Mexican-Salvadorian imagemaker Thalía Gochez talks about growing up as a child of immigrants, how photography came out of her love of styling, and why being a good person can make you a better photographer

Each year, as part of the Photography Annual, Creative Review’s editorial team selects five photographers that have made an impact over the past 12 months as our Zeitgeist winners

Thalía Gochez’s imagemaking is a joyous celebration of Lantinx identity. A quick scroll through her Instagram reveals a series of vibrant portraits of Latinx homegirls captured in their local neighbourhoods and styled with oversized hoop earrings, ribbon-braided hair and neon eyeshadow. 

Her striking aesthetic has attracted international acclaim of late; highlights include holding an ­exhibition of her work in San Francisco, being part of this year’s Dazed 100 list, and featuring in Nike’s recent All For 1 show.

Gochez has always had a creative streak, although a lack of access to the arts when she was growing up forced her to express her creativity through other means. “I’ve always dressed and styled myself since I was four; I never let my mum touch my outfits,” she tells CR. “I have pictures of me wearing funny outfits, or mixing and matching hand-me-downs; that was really how I explored my creativity with the resources I had.”

From Gochez’s Hermanas de Sangre photo series. All images © Thalía Gochez