Mendoza (Bernard) Townsfolk Portfolio, circa 2012
Bernard Mendoza was born in the United Kingdom and embarked on a career as a photographer in London during the 1960s. At the beginning of his career, he worked primarily for commercial clients including Chanel, Clairol, and Coty. In 1980, assignments with Texas Instruments and Shell Oil prompted Mendoza to establish a studio in Houston, Texas; he would later move to California to direct television commercials. Mendoza’s more recent work focuses on documenting current social issues and everyday life. Notable projects include his acclaimed Portrait of a City Hospital, a photographic essay depicting public healthcare in America and From Generation to Generation, documenting Orthodox Judaism in the United States. Along with his wife, noted essayist Marilyn Albert Mendoza, Mendoza has recently completed the Townsfolk project, a series of photographic portraits and essays featuring the residents of Round Top, Texas.
Mendoza’s work has been exhibited and collected by several prominent museums including the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, the National Portrait Gallery in London, the Smithsonian Institute, the Denver Art Museum, and the Royal Photographic Society. A two-time recipient of The John Kobal Foundation International Award for Portraiture, Mendoza has also been awarded a Colorado Council on the Arts Fellowship and a grant from Steven Spielberg’s Righteous Persons Foundation. In addition to his work as a photographer, Mendoza teaches workshops on the art and craft of photography.
The Bernard Mendoza Townsfolk portfolio consists of 42 photographic prints from the Townsfolk project that document the unique inhabitants of Round Top, Texas, population 90. Accompanied by essays written by Marilyn Albert Mendoza, Townsfolk shows the strong ties many of the town’s natives feel towards their German heritage and how more recent settlers have changed the landscape of the small Texas community. Spanning the five years from 2009 to 2014, the project marks Mendoza’s first use of color photography for a documentary project. Each of the 42 prints in the collection are signed and dated by the artist. The photographs are featured in Townsfolk, published in 2014 by Tillworth Enterprises Incorporated.
The numbers next to the portrait subjects’ names were assigned by the artist.
This collection is open for research use.
The artist retains copyright on all materials. Written permission must be obtained from copyright holder in order to photocopy or publish from the collection.
Cite as: Bernard Mendoza Townsfolk Portfolio, circa 2012, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.
This collection was processed by Nikki Koehlert, April, 2016.
Subsequent revisions were made by Amy K. Bowman, May, 2016.