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  • ICAA Record ID
    792891
    TITLE
    Sr. J. P. Arriaga : ciudad de México
    IN
    El Fotógrafo Mexicano : Publicación mensual dedicada al arte de la fotografía (México, D. F., México). -- No. 1 (Jul. 1901)
    DESCRIPTION
    p. 1, 11-12, 14 : ill.
    LANGUAGES
    Spanish
    TYPE AND GENRE
    Journal article – Essays
    BIBLIOGRAPHIC CITATION
    "Sr. J. P. Arriaga: Ciudad de México." El Fotógrafo Mexicano: Publicación mensual dedicada al arte de la fotografía (Mexico City) 3, no.1 (July 1901): 1, 11-12, 14.
    TOPIC DESCRIPTORS
    NAME DESCRIPTORS
    Arriaga, José P.
    GEOGRAPHIC DESCRIPTORS
Synopsis

This article introduces one of the oldest studio photographers in Mexico City: José P. Arriaga, who was fifty years old at the time the article was published. He began as an amateur photographer and in less than six years became so proficient with the camera that he started using it professionally. The photographs that are published in this issue of El Fotógrafo Mexicano [The Mexican Photographer] are worthy examples of nineteenth-century art of the period as they capture a segment of the Mexican middle class. The article praises the work of this “professional photographic artist, who is one of the best in the country.” It also helps to explain how nineteenth-century photographers sought to improve their skills by visiting studios in other countries in search of brand-new information. The anonymous writer of this article says that, “. . . through constant exploration and experimentation [Arriaga] has managed to master, if that is the correct term, the beautiful art of light and shadow that is photography.” This 1901 article on Arriaga is an unquestionably important document, as are the photographs published in the magazine, which have never been included in a historiography of Mexican photography. 

Annotations

Written in 1901, this article is very important because it shows how nineteenth-century forms of expression persisted in the waning years of the century. There is scant information about photographers like José P. Arriaga in the national historiography. Identifying the man and showing his photographs, as in this article, is part of the process of reconstructing the history of Mexican photography. There are still many photographers whose work must be studied. 

Introducing Arriaga is important because he was very likely the father of Ana and Elena Arriaga, who opened their photography studio in 1904, at 19, Hidalgo Avenue (which used to be called Hombres Ilustres). The studio—“Foto Arriaga”—survived the revolution of 1910 to 1920 and was still catering to clients and friends in 1926. These details substantially contribute to part of the history that has not yet been told and remains to be written.

Researcher
Rebeca Monroy
Team
CURARE, Espacio crítico para las artes, Mexico City, Mexico
Credit

Location
Fondo Reservado del Instituto de Investigaciones Bibliográficas : Biblioteca Nacional/Hemeroteca Nacional, México.