Image courtesy of Diemar/Noble
Tapping into the spirit of Mexico's bicentennial celebrations, Quetzalcoatl: Photographs by Manuel Alvarez Bravo allows Londoners a poignant glimpse into Mexican life during 20th century.
Featuring black and white photographs from the 1920s through to the 90s by Manuel Alvarez Bravo (1902-2002), the works on show are both modern in Bravo's approach to his subject matter (people, objects of art and worship, mountains and the mundane implements of a worker's daily routine all forming a sort of psychic landscape) while aware and respectful of his own cultural heritage.
Where other noted photographers might have photographed impoverished and working classes with sympathy or pity, Bravo shot with intense and almost amorous admiration.
Considered by many to be the master of contemporary Mexican photography, Bravo's images suggest a post-revolutionary nation of failed colonial grandeur and triumphant pragmatic peasantry chugging - and at times teetering - along through an uncertain century with indigenous pride and singular beauty.
Quetzalcoatl runs until the 6th of November at Diemar/Noble photography gallery, 66/67 Wells Street W1P 3PY. Visit www.diemarnoblephotography.com for details.