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© Colette Urbajtel/Archivo Manuel Álvarez Bravo, SC

Manuel Alvarez Bravo
Mexican, 1940s
Gelatin silver print
9 7/16 x 7 in.
92.XM.23.45

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Manuel Alvarez Bravo's image of a worn adobe wall rendered against a cloud-filled sky is both dramatic and mysterious, provoking questions about its purpose and meaning. Whom or what is this barrier protecting? What lies on the other side? A strange mast-like, wooden assemblage protrudes from behind the wall into the sky but offers no clues. The wall is a boundary to the unknown, and the viewer is denied an answer to this enigmatic juxtaposition of forms and materials.