A charismatic stage and screen actress. A model whose beauty inspired some of the most arresting images of the twentieth century. A visionary photographer. A revolutionary with deep commitments to communism. A woman whose life, loves, and death were controversial. Tina Modotti (1896–1942) was all of these. Her life was one of almost unimaginable glamor, scandal, and turmoil. This biography portrays Modotti accurately and fairly, cutting through the distortions of myth and rumor that surround her. Perhaps best known as the lover, model, and apprentice of American photographer Edward Weston, Modotti emerges in these pages as a complex woman, deeply passionate in her relationships as well as her art and politics.
Historian Letizia Argenteri examines an array of international historical documents and letters as she traces the path of Modotti’s life and career through Italy, California, Mexico, Germany, Moscow, and Spain. Argenteri tells the dramatic story in full detail, casting light on the mysteries of Modotti’s life and carefully placing her in the political and social milieu of her time. The many fascinating illustrations in this book further illuminate Modotti’s life.