Published in conjunction with the first major museum exhibition of Brazilian modernist photography outside of Brazil, Fotoclubismo presents the groundbreaking creative achievements of São Paulo’s Foto-Cine Clube Bandeirante, a group of amateur photographers founded in 1939 that is essentially unknown today to European and North American audiences. The vast majority of FCCB members pursued photography outside of their day jobs as lawyers, businessmen, accountants, journalists, engineers, biologists and bankers, but they were nonetheless quite serious about their artistic ambition. Their radical experimentations with process and form and their determination to distill inventive compositions from everyday life contributed to their esteemed reputation within an active international postwar scene—a status that has been all but forgotten.
This richly illustrated publication assembles a robust selection of photographs to introduce the FCCB’s photographic experiments to an international audience. Six chapters highlight individual achievements nestled between thematic groupings that suggest the breadth of the club’s talent. Curator Sarah Meister’s essay situates the FCCB within the broader contemporary art scene in Brazil as well as a dynamic network of photographers around the world, and offers fresh insight into the status of the amateur then and now. This is the first non-Portuguese-language publication to grapple with these photographs that were widely heralded at the time of their creation.