Tina Modotti (Italian, 1896–1942)
Mexican Ploughman, early 20th century
Silver gelatin photograph on paper
Signed to the lower right
Born in Italy, actress and photographer Tina Modotti immigrated to the United States at age sixteen. During her early years in the United States, she acted in silent films and plays and worked as an artist’s model. She met photographer Edward Weston in 1920 with whom she had a romantic relationship. In 1923, the two moved to Mexico City where they opened a portrait studio and were involved in bohemian and artistic circles, that included Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Sergei Eisenstein, and Leon Trotsky. Modotti’s photographic subjects often feature people and sights of Mexico, many of which capture her social concerns or push architectural elements toward abstraction. In 1930, Modotti was exiled from Mexico due to her leftist political leanings. She later settled in Mosco and joined the Soviet Communist Party. Her work has been exhibited and collected by multiple reputable institutions including the Museum of Modern Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and the Philadelphia Museum of Art, among many others.
- minor cracks to gelatin to the corners; notable crack and tear to the left of image; minor abrasions to the frame.
- measures frame; visible image measures 17.75" W x 10.0" H.