The Modern Lens at Tate St. Ives explores developments in international photography from the 1920s to the 1960s. The exhibition uncovers the sense of curiosity and experimentation as artists harnessed the medium in new ways. In the first of a new series looking closely at the photographic techniques employed by the artists on display, discover to the abstraction of Geraldo de Barros.

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  • Geraldo de Barros Untitled (São Paulo) Composition II 1949
    Geraldo de Barros
    Untitled (São Paulo) Composition II 1949
  • Geraldo de Barros Sem títlo (Fios telegráficos) 1950s
    Geraldo de Barros
    Sem títlo (Fios telegráficos) 1950s



  • Geraldo de Barros b.1923 Granada, Spain 1951
    Geraldo de Barros b.1923
    Granada, Spain 1951
  • Geraldo de Barros Abstraction (São Paulo) 1949
    Geraldo de Barros
    Abstraction (São Paulo) 1949

Geraldo de Barros was an accomplished painter, photographer and designer, and was vital to the development of modernist photography internationally. His early career was devoted to figurative painting, but he later established links with more experimental practices, leading him to become one of the pioneers of abstract photography in Brazil.

His photographic experiments include multiple exposures, use of handmade filters and the juxtaposition of shadows and light. This group of prints reveals de Barros’ interest in capturing the geometries and formal compositions found in urban life.

The Modern Lens: International Photography and the Tate collection is on display at Tate St. Ives until 10 May 2015