Tina Modotti – a Red Woman-Photographer

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16.01.2015 Posted in History No Comments

January 5 was the birthday of Tina Modotti. I would like to mark the date of birth of this remarkable Red woman with a few words, even if it is a couple of weeks late. The legendary Tina! Many women who strive to succeedThe white Iris (Tina Modotti)  by Edward Weston 1921
would have like to live Tina’s life. Passion, beauty, talent, accomplishment, love and mystery – were all a part of the destiny of this Italian photographer, model and actress. Born in Italy in 1913, she moved to the US in 1923 where she eventually met the photographer Edward Weston, quickly/soon becoming his favorite model. The two moved to Mexico, where she met Manuel Alvarez Bravo who helped her to develop her talent as a photographer. She also became good friends of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, who painted her in his frescos, as well as Pablo Neruda, who dedicated a poem to her. It was in Mexico that Tina decided to join the Communist party. Accused of an attempt on the life of the Mexican President, Pascual Ortiz Rubio, in 1929, she was forced to leave the country. At the beginning of the 1930s she lived in Moscow and then in Spain, becoming an active antifascist. Eventually her ban on visiting Mexico was lifted and Tina moved back to her ‘adoptive homeland,’ where she died in 1942. The circumstances of her death are unclear. Officially she died of heart failure. Many suggested that her death was orchestrated by those who thought she knew too much about political dealings in Spain or in Russia (it was suggested that when Tina left Russia she changed her mind about the Soviet state, becoming less supportive of the regime and annoying Stalin). However, above all Tina is known as one of the first prominent female photographers. Though many suggest that her fame is not well-deserved and is based on the support of Edward Weston and Manuel Alvarez Bravo, Tina Modotti is still remembered and celebrated as one of the most talented and beautiful women of the 20th century, whose remarkable life was filled with passion, love and adventure.

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