Classic Theme/[Tema Clásico]

Object Details


Classic Theme/[Tema Clásico]


Manuel Álvarez Bravo (Mexican, 1902 - 2002)




1942 - 1946


Gelatin silver print


11.4 x 10.2 cm (4 1/2 x 4 in.)


© Colette Urbajtel/Archivo Manuel Álvarez Bravo, SC

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Manuel Alvarez Bravo directed this eerie but provocative arrangement of a skeleton clutching a dagger. He included clues, a pearl necklace and earrings, to inform the viewer that the subject is a female. The model for this scene, Doris Heydn, Alvarez Bravo's second wife, holds the end of a dagger near the brooch bearing the word amada, which means "beloved." By using the X-Ray process, Alvarez Bravo succeeded in penetrating her exterior flesh and capturing the interior landscape of her body.


Manuel Álvarez Bravo, Mexican, 1902 - 2002

Manuel Alvarez Bravo: Recuerdo de unos años (September 22 to December 6, 1992)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), September 22 to December 6, 1992
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