A few months ago, about the expatriate path of a Madeiraan family to Brazil and, more precisely, Jose Fernandes, I briefly mentioned in this location the Goa of the 1950s, a Goa still under Portuguese rule. is under the. He then said that José spent five years in the service of the Portuguese army from 1951 to 1957, “perhaps in a troubled military context, characterized by uprisings, popular uprisings (and many peaceful actions, too) that, ultimately, lead to 17 The Indian Union’s attack on Salazar’s Estado Novo in December, 1961, resulted in a quick victory for the Indian Army, which captured the region in less than three days.
This would be a serious blow to the regime, which was opposed by the maternal grandparents of the artist Ana Janeiro, who emigrated to the so-called Portuguese India in 1951 and lived there for ten years, finally returning to the metropolis. Portuguese presence. From the estate left by him, there are letters that Jan’s grandmother wrote to her mother, who was in Lisbon, and which formed the basis of an intense and dense work of “post-memory” by the artist, which combined performance, photography. Is. and video. , “in the making of a history that is simultaneously individual and collective”. In the video produced for number 35 of INTERACT – Revista Online de Cultura, which I recently co-ordinated with Maura Grimaldi, Janeiro revisits the book “Album India Portuguesa 1951 – 1961”, through it “to read letters” Through “Voice”. Taking the “grandmother’s experience” during that period, giving individual events the density of intersection with historical events (and historical events, the sentimentality of personal experience).
It was also at that time, more precisely in 1960, Augusto Cabrita (1923–1993) went to the Portuguese territories of India, and did what we might call an essay in the style of “travel photography”. The selection of paintings he produced in this context shaped the exhibition “Portuguese India”, which currently houses the Madeira Photography Museum – Atelier Vicente. The biographical note that accompanies the exhibition catalog highlights the photographic gifts of Cabrita, who was also a director, producer of RTP, and director of photography – highlighting his contribution to the field in the film/documentary Bellarmino by Fernando Lopes, 1964 was put.
The images, presented as unpublished in any way and rendered in a context that is largely unknown, are a 6×6 format, a medium format resulting from the capture of a Roliflex, partly Cabrita’s son, Augusto Antonio Pixinho do Carmo Cabrita, was perceived as “out of the womb” by his father, partly because the camera is placed under the chest. Prints created today from the digitization of the original negatives are, in most cases, with laconic captions, except when the positive prints left by the author are accompanied by notes that bring us more accurate information, for example, identification pictures. One of the protagonists appears as “opium smokers”.
Antonio Senna, a leading historian of photography in Portugal, inscribed Augusto Cabrita within a generation of the 1950s that renews photographic thinking through its modernism and experimentalism (framing, careful high-contrast, protest, In sequence, unusual and …). A humanistic, sometimes almost neo-realistic, gaze permeates these images of still landscapes, portraits and rites, perhaps under the influence of the exhibition “The Family of Man”, organized by Edward Steichen at the MoMA in 1955, as an essay To be affirmed as an essential association in the context of global diversity, highlighting the universal and universal dimension of human experience. In Cabrita’s photographs, the local habits, customs, and the traveler’s view of the diversity and exoticism of the faces overlap (almost) completely with evidence of a Portuguese and Christian presence or heritage in that area.
Opting to give the reader the possibility to view exclusively live (and in black and white), images now printed for the occasion of the exhibition – which were created, whenever possible, according to technical instructions left by the photographer – The abbreviation refers not to Goa, not in Daman or Diu, but in Mumbai, not in 1960, but (probably) not the text of a foreign image produced in the late 19th century. This, thanks to the portability of things called visiting cards that democratized portraits in photography, is now part of the collection of the Museum of Photography – Atelier Vicente.
Dadabhai Byramji Photographer, Bombay – Untitled – (1870-1900) – Album Proof (Carte de Visit) – Madeira Photography Museum – Atelier Vicente, Invitational. RBM/32.37
Madeira Photography Museum – in collaboration with Atelier Vicente.