1 of 7
Photo by Enrique Metenides
Hotel Regis, 1985
Hotel Regis (1985)
2 of 7
Photo by Pablo Ortiz Monasterio
Volando bajo, 1987In the image 'Low flight' by renowned photographer Pablo Ortiz Monasterio (Mexico City, 1952), the individual and the context actively interact. According to curator Alexis Fabry, the photo best epitomises the show's title 'The Weight of the City'. This image, taken in 1987, is one of the earliest that features in the photographer's prize-winning book 'La última ciudad' (The Last City), published in 1996.
3 of 7
Photo by Annemarie Heinrich
Veraneando en la ciudad, 1958Annemarie Heinrich, (Darmstadt, Germany, 1912) immigrated to Argentina with her family in 1929. She became known for her portrait photographs of famous figures, including writer Jorge Luis Borges, poet Pablo Neruda and celebrity politician Eva Perón. She is known too for her arty nudes, taken in the Fifties and Sixties, at a time when photography was not considered an art form.
4 of 7
Photo by Sergio Larrain
Valparaíso, c.1963Sergio Larrain (Santiago de Chile, 1931) produced zillions of negatives looking for those that perfectly captured the 'naturalism' of a scene. Working for the Magnum agency, he produced a series of photo essays in the Fifties and Sixties, in which individuals appear in the foreground, as if their perception of a scene was what mattered. This contrasts with much of the other work on show, in which people appear in a mass or are absent.
5 of 7
Photo by Horacio Coppola
Calle San Martín a las 24h (Buenos Aires), 1936The darkly atmospheric cityscape was a style unique to Horacio Coppola (Buenos Aires, 1907), a photographer trained in the famous Bauhaus art school in Berlin, and husband of German surrealist photographer Grete Stern. In 1936, Coppola was commissioned to produce a series of photographs of Buenos Aires for the city's 400th anniversary.
6 of 7
Photo by Geraldo de Barros
Linhas Interropidas (Tatuape), 1948Quirky abstract landscapes, such as that of Geraldo de Barros (Chavantes, Brazil, 1923), may seem the norm now, but were not so in 1948, when the photograph was taken. De Barros was a painter, an industrial designer and a graphic artist and was later influenced by pop art. His passion for all things geometric clearly influenced his photography.
7 of 7
Photo by Enrique Metenides
Hotel Regis, 1985Colour film arrived late in Latin America. Enrique Metinides (Mexico City, 1934) uses it to powerful effect in his depiction of the collapse of the Hotel Regis in the magnitude 8.1 earthquake in 1985, in which vast chunks of Mexico City collapsed and 10,000 people died. Metinides worked for the tabloids—his photographs are vivid, often grizzly depictions of death and disaster, compared to which this one appears poetic.
Read Alx Phillips's slideshow review of the exhibition; click on 'Slideshow' above
This exhibition, 'El peso de la ciudad', takes photos from the Anna Gamazo de Abelló collection and features some of the greatest examples of 20th-century Latin American photography. Works by the likes of the Argentinian portrait photographer Horacio Coppola, Cuban Alberto Korda and Brazilian Geraldo de Barros are just some of the exciting names featured. After seven years, this collection still offers a fresh view of Latin American photography and its richly varied techniques, but also, a very real representation of people and culture.