Wagner Celestino, Girl at the window, 1997, From Tenement Series
Wagner Celestino: Constelação Celestina
Oct 6, 2023 – Apr 7, 2024
Sesc
São Paulo, Brazil

The exhibition presents photographs by Wagner Celestino, a black and peripheral photographer born in 1952 in the East of São Paulo. His records reveal workers, artists and cultural and religious rites that praise the beauty and memory of the Afro-descendant population. They are high-contrast black and white records, with an approach between an artistic project and a historical documentary.

A veteran photographer who is notable for the quality of his photographic reports which, since 1977, have focused with rare sensitivity on the Afro-Brazilian cultural scene, Wagner Celestino has non-formal training in photography that he obtained in photography workshops at the Lasar Segall Museum. His work moves between artistic project and historical investigative documentary.

The photographer works to prospect images that reveal the actions of the proletarian and peripheral people in their greatness and humanity in an approach with remarkable psychological and sociological acuity. He portrayed names from Brazilian music and, among them, members of the Velha Guarda do Vai-Vai. He is also responsible for the photographic series Cortiços, from 1988. In this solo exhibition, new photos of residents of the Bixiga neighborhood and Velha Guarda do Vai-Vai are added to this collection.

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