El Lugar de la Mujer: A Woman’s Place

 

(This text was partially published at The International Museum of Women, February 2014)

Alicia D’Amico, born in Buenos Aires (1933-2001), was an Argentinian photographer. Camera in hand, she always preferred her photographs in black and white as well as the format of 35 mm.

Alicia graduated from the National School of Fine Arts as Professor of Drawing and Painting in 1953. In 1955, she was awarded a scholarship by the French government and lived in Paris for a year, which allowed her to improve her knowledge in Visual Arts and purchase her first camera.

Two years later, Alicia made her first photographic work thanks to studying and her father who was also a photographer; later, she become assistant to photographer Annemarie Heinrich. Along with Sara Facio, Alicia opened a studio in the 1960s and taught at the School of Photography in Argentina, where she was called “master” by his students.

Between 1983 and 1999, Argentina witnessed a critical mass of women artists emerge who organized exhibitions and events, and challenged the patriarchal discourse. In 1983, alongside the filmmaker Maria Luisa Bemberg, Alicia became cofounder of A Woman’s Place (Lugar de la Mujer). It was one of the first feminist institutions in Argentina to host interdisciplinary feminist activities. It was open to lesbian feminists too, who, in 1986, together with the photographer Ilse Foscova, organized public interventions in favor of women rights.

Alicia’s photographic work focused on teaching and collaboration in books, especially with artists and intellectuals of South America such as Jorge Luis Borges, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Adolfo Bioy Casares, Julio Cortázar, Oscar Painter, Alejo Carpentier, Miguel Angel Asturias, Pablo Neruda, and Astor Piazzolla — many of whom were the subject of his black-and-white portraits.

Her work has been exhibited in many countries as part of group shows with other artists such as Pedro Luis Raota, Osvaldo Salzamendi Francisco Tenllado, Rubén Sotera, and Alicia Sanguinett but her work has held individual exhibitions worldwide as well. On August 30, 2001, Alicia died in her hometown of Bueno  Aires but her photographs continue to enlighten.

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