Artists, curators, and writers from Vienna utilise the typology of the Zocalo as the place for their project at the Biennale in Xalapa. In a city without the Zocalo square, where everything social typically happens, we develop a series of performances, workshops, and exhibitions. A year of art-research supports these site-specific interventions and will contextualise the exhibition as a blog and book publication. This blog is the basis for this publication, a point of exchange for our artistic processes, and a resource for our cultural translations of Mexico for the Vienna Zocalo. Vienna Zocalo is developed over the course of 2010-2011 in the Department of Fashion and Styles at the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna.

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Mittwoch, 24. November 2010

Tina Modotti at Kunsthaus Wien

The exhibition ‘Tina Modotti - Photographer and Revolutionary’ which is currently exhibited at Kunsthaus Wien, looks to give the visitor an overview of the artist’s life and works. Tina Modotti was born on the 16th of August 1896 in Udine and is one of the most important figures within documentary photography during the Mexican Revolution (1910 – 1920).
Modotti’s work was influenced by her travel experiences as well as the other artists and politicians that she worked and shared her ideas with, these included Edward Weston, Xavier Guerrero, Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera.

The exhibition is spread out over two floors and is chronological arranged starting with her first pictures taken in Mexico City. These works, mainly photographs which present Modotti’s special eye for surface condition and structure in architecture, are enhanced by Edward Weston. The exhibition finishes with her journey to Berlin, where she was affected by doubts about her future career as a professional photographer.

The first expression the viewer is confronted with tries to give a very personal insight to Modotti’s life. You can find some botanical photographs about different flowers as well as classical portraits of friends and clients. For the viewer it is obvious that her political motivations increase over the years. On the second floor especially, you can see extensive documentation of the famous mural paintings in the department of education by Diego Rivera.

During her lifetime Modotti wasn't valued as much as the significant and influential artists she documented. Her work is essential for a retrospective of Mexican art, culture and history. 

text by Eva Greisberger

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