• Tina Modotti

    Philadelphia Museum of Art

    The moody, somewhat-romanticized Tina Modotti we know through Edward Weston’s close-ups of her face, and especially through his more formal, subliminally impassioned photographs of her flesh—the seductive Eternal Feminine incarnate, the indiscreet object of desire—has no resemblance to the “portrait” of Modotti that emerges from her own hard-bitten, harshly honest photographs. The Mexican women (and men) she identifies with are peasants and workers. Though she sometimes allegorizes them, as in Misery, 1928, and Elegance and Poverty, ca. 1928, or gives them a certain stolid dignity, as in Women

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