[Tomb Ornament]/[Adorno de Tumba]

Object Details


[Tomb Ornament]/[Adorno de Tumba]


Manuel Álvarez Bravo (Mexican, 1902 - 2002)






Gelatin silver print


26.7 x 26.4 cm (10 1/2 x 10 3/8 in.)


© Colette Urbajtel/ Archivo Manuel Álvarez Bravo, SC

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In contrast to the withered brush at the foot of this cross, festive paper flowers and ribbons adorn the top of this grave marker. Manuel Alvarez Bravo photographed this scene from a low vantage point to illustrate the multiple layers of crosses at work. According to Mexican culture, life and death, intertwined with the idea of rebirth, represent stages of a cosmic process that repeats itself incessantly. Death, therefore, becomes an intricate part of everyday life. Perhaps these decorations were left over from the rituals of Día de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead, when people visit the cemetery to honor their deceased relatives.

The Flower Show: Photographs from the J. Paul Getty Museum Selected by Sam Wagstaff (April 13, 1985 to January 11, 1986)
  • The Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit), April 13 to June 16, 1985
  • The Parrish Art Museum (Southampton), November 17, 1985 to January 11, 1986
Manuel Alvarez Bravo: Optical Parables (November 13, 2001 to February 9, 2003)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), November 13, 2001 to February 17, 2002
  • Museo Nacional de Arte (Mexico City), March 14 to June 2, 2002
  • Walker Art Center (Minneapolis), November 10, 2002 to February 9, 2003

Musée de Arte Moderne. Manuel Alvarez Bravo: 303 Photographies, 1920-1986 (Paris: Paris-musées; Paris audiovisuel, 1986), no. 203.