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Romeo Martinez: Camera 1953/1964

3 years ago

“Martinez is, in my humble opinion, the father confessor of many photographers who came to him begging for absolution. His greatest sin is never having asked them for any offerings for his worship of photography. He knows each of us better than we know ourselves.” Henri Cartier – Bresson

The International Gallery of Modern Art in Ca’ Pesaro presents an exhibition gathering the most significant issues of Camera and a number of photographies documenting Romeo Martinez’s work. Particular attention is given to the relationship between Martinez and Venice.

Published beginning in the early 1920s in Switzerland, the monthly magazine Camera became a key reference for international photography in the 1950s and ’60s, thanks to the passionate commitment of Romeo Martinez (1911-1990), its editor-in-chief from 1953 to 1964. Martinez turned the magazine into an internationally recognized instrument for the promotion of photographic culture by expanding, through the definition and the renewal of photographic genres, their application in contemporary society.

Romeo Martinez ran the Venice Biennale of International Photography from 1957 to 1965, mounting an extraordinary series of exhibitions showcasing the best of European, American and Japanese production, and playng a key role in establishing photographers as Authors in their own right.
The Biennale inspired the experience of Venezia ’79 la Fotografia, a festival entirely dedicated to photography, which saw the return of Romeo Martinez to Venice through his new collaboration with the Museo Fortuny.

Martinez’s commitment to photography also included substantial editorial work. Beginning in the 1970s, he was in charge of the collection Bibliothek der Fotografie and Photography = Man and Movements for the Swiss publisher C.J. Bucher, and he oversaw The Great Photographers for the Milanese publisher Fabbri.
With great rigour and passion, Romeo Martinez contributed to the expansion of the historical and theoretical vocabulary of photography, highlighting its extraordinary complexity and richness, defining questions that have over time maintained their sense of urgency and necessity.

Teresa Sartore

  • Courtesy of Ca' Pesaro Courtesy of Ca' Pesaro
  • Courtesy of Ca' Pesaro Courtesy of Ca' Pesaro
  • Courtesy of Ca' Pesaro Courtesy of Ca' Pesaro

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