Paco Gómez - Orden y desorden
Famila de Turégano
A new exhibition celebrates the life’s work of one of Spain’s most influential photographers; Paco Gómez. Francisco ‘Paco’ Gómez Martínez, was born in Pamplona in 1918 and became a member of the Real Sociedad Fotográfia in 1956. His work can now be found hanging in the renowned Museo Reina Sofía gallery in Madrid and other large galleries across Spain.
Gómez was a core member of the ‘La Palangana’ group, alongside photographers Gerardo Vielba, Juan Dolcet, Leonardo Cantero, Fernando Gordillo and Gabriel Cualladó and it was within that group where he met other influential photographers such as Ramon Masats. Amongst them they helped to develop a purer style of photography which reacted against the favoured style of the time, pictorialism. The movement moved radically away from the whimsical nature of pictorialism and attempted to capture daily life; it showed a concern for social issues and drew its influences from the neorealism artistic wave, evident in Italian cinema and the paintings of Charles Ginner and Harold Gilman.
Silence and austerity are constant themes running through Gómez’s work and can be witnessed in his most prominent subjects; post-war Spain, empty spaces, interiors and architectural structures. One such work that follows this tenent is his ‘Tranvia en el paseo de Extremadura.’ This image shows a desolate landscape with a single passing train carriage travelling through the back of the shot, leaving behind the barren land.
Many of the images are in black and white; the stark contrasts of light and dark suitably reflecting the shell-shocked emotions of a post-war Spain. But from the early Eighties, Gòmez’s work moves with the times and he starts to move towards colour. He still manages to convey the same austere eye for an image keeping the very simple lines and forms ever present.
This homage to the photographer includes 75 pieces and presents an artist’s life which traversed the majority of the 20th century. It shows not only the key aspects of Spanish history, but also the crucial developments of modern photography. A vital exhibition for any photography lover.