El retrato fotográfico en la Buenos Aires decimonónica: la burguesía se representa a sí misma


Varia Historia




Ever since the introduction of the daguerreotype to the Río de la Plata region in 1840, formal studio portraits became daguerreotypists . main source of income. This novelty, which made it possible to obtain likenesses more exact than those produced by the portrait painters settled in the country by that time, was warmly welcomed by the Buenos Aires society. Nevertheless, at the peak of the daguerreotype period in the 1850.s, photography was an expensive luxury that only members of the higher classes could afford. Unlike today.s candid portraits and due to the technological limitations of the process, daguerreotype portraits required long exposure times and sophisticated poses. These first records can then be considered as documents, which allow us to reconstruct the mentality of the Río de la Plata bourgeoisie in the mid 19th Century. Through an elaborate mise-en-scene which resulted from the dialogue between photographer and subject, the members of the Buenos Aires high society conveyed to the future generations ideas, manners and opinions peculiar to their class.

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