APRIL 19th – JUNE 9th, 2012
Timeless Mexico: Photographs of Hugo Brehme
Throckmorton Fine Art is pleased to offer an exhibit that both commemorates and compliments the publication of a major work in Latin American photography, Timeless Mexico: The Photographs of Hugo Brehme. The author of the work is Susan Toomey Frost and it includes a forward by Stella de Sá Rego. The publisher is the University of Texas Press. Hugo Brehme has often been said to be the “grandfather” of Mexican photography. Working in Mexico from 1905 until his death in 1954, Brehme was a central figure in the creation of a Mexican aesthetic, which, in turn, was a vital part of the reformulation and strengthening of Mexican nationalism, a proud definition of what is Mexico and who are Mexicans.
Brehme adhered, unapologetically, to a Pictoralist style throughout his life, even after modernism came into vogue. Brehme had a gift for composition and was skilled at printing his images. His photography is notable for its strong black-and-white contrasts and its rich tones. It is very graphic. While Brehme’s Pictoralism is lyrical, infused with nineteenth-century Romanticism, there is also present in many of his photographs a burgeoning social realism, as well as a celebration of lo mexicano. It is these last two traits in his work which have contributed to a renewed appreciation of his work in Mexico. In 1989 and again in 1995, there were exhibits (complete with catalogues) in Mexico City devoted solely to Brehme’s photography.
Throckmorton is proud to offer the first exhibit of Brehme’s photography here in the United States. In addition to showing many vintage photographs by Brehme, the exhibit will include a sprinkling of work by some of his noted contemporaries in Mexico: Paul Strand, Gordon Abbott, Anton Bruehl, Laura Gilpin, Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Edward Weston, and Tina Modotti. In total, thirty-eight photographs from this formative era in Mexican photography will be exhibited.