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Sympathetic Nervous System
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© Colette Urbajtel/Archivo Manuel Álvarez Bravo, SC

Manuel Alvarez Bravo
Mexican, negative 1929, print 1974
Gelatin silver print
9 9/16 x 7 5/8 in.
84.XM.676.2

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Using clasps meant to attach stockings to a garter, Manuel Alvarez Bravo affixed a scientific drawing of a male torso in profile to an advertisement for women's corsets, then photographed the collage. The resulting image emphasizes the similarities between the male skeletal structure and the external binding devices used to support the female form. In comparing the natural and the artificial, the collage probes what lies beneath the surface of both skin and clothing.