Clear the coffee tables! Assouline has done it again—this time, paying homage to polo heritage.
Assouline adds one more book to the shelf of its fall 2021 Classics Collection with the release of Polo Heritage. From Mongolia to Mexico, each page dives into the history of the beloved sport and showcases the most prestigious tournaments, fields, players, fans and, of course, horses.
Two Argentinean polo champions, Clemente Zavaleta and Bartolomé Castagnola, at the Chantilly Polo Club.
The book features an introduction by legendary polo player Nacho Figueras, accompanied by images by nomadic Parisian photographer Aline Coquelle. With a degree in art history and anthropology under her belt, this bona fide scholar-meets-photographer has been featured in several international publications and luxury brand marketing campaigns—not to mention six Assouline books. Having lived and worked in Central and South America, Asia and Africa, Coquelle has made her mark by capturing the mystique of old-time photography through the use of silver film that produces her world-renowned gelatin silver prints. Here, she talks about her best shots, favorite spots and what readers can expect from Polo Heritage.
The first edition of the Veuve Clicquot Polo Classic on Governors Island, New York, 2009
What images were your favorite to shoot? The Pakistan game in Hindu Kush. This is an outstanding place at the foot of the Himalayas, the highest polo field in the world (4,000 meters), and you can see the most amazing and fearless players.
Aiken Cura, one of Adolfo Cambiaso’s most famous stallions
After all is said and done, which location stayed with you? The wild pampas of Argentina and the Al’Ula site in Saudi Arabia.
Princess Diana and Prince Charles at a polo match in Palm Beach, Fla., 1985
What can readers expect from this book as a whole? A real ‘dream team’ spirit between men and horses but also between all nationalities in the world. It gathers all generations and celebrates a collective global family, a nomadic lifestyle and positive vibes.
Vintage poster for an exhibition polo match in Jaipur, 1965
What makes this book special to you? It transcends social and geographic frontiers and celebrates an international way of life. In a polo team, there are no boundaries—you can find many nationalities and ages (players can be 14 to 70 years old), men and women, players with privileged backgrounds and more humble ones… And horses are 70% of the game! Polo horses are like Ferrari cars and ballet dancers at the same time. They’re very impressive!
Photography by: FROM TOP: PHOTO BY ALINE COQUELLE; PHOTO: BY ALINE COQUELLE; PHOTO: BY ALINE COQUELLE; PHOTO: BY ALINE COQUELLE; PHOTO: BY TERRY FINCHER/PRINCESS DIANA ARCHIVE/GETTY IMAGES; COURTESY OF JAIPUR RIDING & POLO CLUB