The Manuel Álvarez Bravo (1902-2002) Association was set up in 2005 ‘to ensure that the personal archives of one of the most important representatives of the history of photography be kept intact, in optimum conditions and in the artist’s native country of Mexico.’ All information in this blog post is from the website of the foundation http://www.manuelalvarezbravo.org/index.php (accessed 11.3.15).
His work, ‘Daughter of the Dancers’ is referenced in the course material (page 30) and in this blog I look further at his work.
He is considered to be one of the founders of modern photography, a description also applied to Alfred Stieglitz (1864–1946) and described in a separate blog entry. A brief search found no indication that the two met, but Alvarez Bravo did meet Paul Strand (connected with Stieglitz) and Cartier-Bresson (http://www.moma.org/interactives/objectphoto/artists/135.html – accessed 11.3.15).
I looked at his images from the 1920s through to the 1990s and then understood why several critics described him as a “poet of the lens”. All images are black and white and full of tonal contrast. Even the simplest of his compositions seem to hold my eye in the frame – especially the images that leave questions unanswered / unresolved. Two such images are shown below.