Tina Modotti, Men Reading «El Machete», ca. 1929 / Fundación Televisa Collection and Archive
Tina Modotti
Jun 8 – Sep 3, 2023
Fundación MAPFRE
Barcelona, Spain

Tina Modotti (Udine, 1896 – Mexico City, 1942) lived in the eye of the storm throughout her life. Her interesting life and artistic career were framed by some of the most important historical events of the 1920s and 1930s and by her constant double commitment: artist-photographer and revolutionary-anti-fascist militant.

Born into a working-class family in Udine, in northern Italy, she emigrated and grew up in the United States, where she became a film actress in Hollywood in the 1920s and met Edward Weston, who introduced her to photography and with whom she moved to Mexico in 1923.

Almost all his photographic work was produced between that date and 1930. During these Mexican years, and following her apprenticeship with Weston, Modotti evolved from an interest in abstract forms to a gaze centered on the human being and on denouncing inequality and injustice. The precarious conditions of workers, urban poverty, and the role of women in the community became, among other similar issues, the main themes of a photography conceived as political propaganda.

This exhibition, Tina Modotti’s most extensive to date, is the result of extensive research, which has made it possible to bring together many vintage prints by Modotti. In addition to the nearly 250 photographs on display, grouped chronologically into four sections, the exhibition includes documentary material, one of the films that Modotti starred in in Hollywood and some works by Edward Weston.