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Second finalist 2019

Daniel Ochoa de Olza

Crossing the Last Border at Tijuana


At the end of 2018, a caravan of several thousand persons was organised from Honduras, one of the poorest and most violent countries in the world, to emigrate to the United States. Most were seeking asylum due to the inhumane living conditions in their places of origin.

Along the way, over the long stretches that they walked, as they crossed over countries and borders, they were joined by many other thousands from various other countries who found protection in their midst from the dangers of a potentially deadly route controlled by mafias. The border wall between Mexico and the United States stands as the last obstacle before reaching the land they yearn for. This is one of the most heavily surveilled boarders in the world and where US President Donald Trump has focused much of his politics and budget. Preventing the entry of persons at any price has become a matter of State.

Discouraged by the long wait to apply for asylum through official ports of entry, many migrants are choosing to jump or cross the wall at Tijuana (Mexico). On the other side, in San Diego (California), the U.S. Border Patrol awaits them.


Daniel Ochoa de Olza is an award-winning independent graphic reporter who lives in Spain and Mexico. Born in Pamplona, Navarre (1978), he studied artistic photography at Pamplona’s School of Art and later at the Barcelona School of Art. After working for The Associated Press for more than 10 years, since 2017 he has been developing his career independently, combining a mixture of long-term personal projects, breaking news, and commissions from his clients. He has also offered master classes and given workshops and conferences at several universities and educational centers in Spain, Mexico, and Chile.

His work has met with broad recognition in both Spanish and international competitions such as World Press Photo (in 2013 for El regreso de un torero and in 2016 for Tradición de La Maya), Picture of the Year International, the National Headliner Awards, NPPA, and CHPP, among others.