Tina Modotti, Photographer and Revolutionary: Photographer and Revolutionary

Margaret Hooks, Author
Margaret Hooks, Author First Glance Books $40 (280p) ISBN 978-0-04-440879-6
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An Italian-born film star, Modatti learned photography with her lover Edward Weston in California during the early 1920s. She went on to develop a camera career of her own; she acquired several additional lovers, including Diego Rivera, in Mexico City's prevailing ferment of avant-garde art and politics; and, during the next 20 years, she became a major Communist revolutionary figure in Germany, Moscow and Spain. She was accused and exonerated of the assassination of one revolutionary lover; she risked her life to carry funds from Moscow to political prisoners in Romania; and she endured hardship, privation and deadly bombardments in Madrid and Barcelona. Repatriated to Mexico, she died in 1942 at the age of 46. Many of Modotti's portraits of celebrities and of common people as well as her journalistic photos are included here, along with characteristically simple, strong compositions--massed straw hats of workers on parade, telegraph wires akimbo, the heart of a calla lily. One of her studies, Roses, Mexico , fetched $165,000 at a Sotheby's auction in 1991. Hooks is a freelance foreign correspondent living in Mexico. (Nov.)
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