Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

Eduardo Gageiro's Happy-Sad City: Humanist Street Photography and Lisboa no Cais da Memória

Bulletin of Hispanic Studies (2011), 88, (4), 481–494.

Abstract

This article analyses Eduardo Gageiro's representation of post-war, pre-revolution Lisbon society in the light of French humanist street photography. It is argued that Gageiro's images closely fit what Peter Hamilton called the 'representational paradigm' of this stream of street photography, and that, by comparing the photographs in Cais da Memória to this thematic grid, we can establish the parameters of its depiction of the city under Salazar. One of the criticisms levelled at French humanist street photography is that it creates a rosy, nostalgia-tinted vision of the recent, yet vastly different, past. While there is an element of Gageiro's work that could be dismissed as twee, any sentimentalilty is counterbalanced by a frontal depiction of the problems of the latter Estado Novo period. In addition, by bearing witness to the positive qualities of this past, Cais da Memória also permits an interrogation of the nature of the present and its difference from historical conditions.

Este artigo debruça-se sobre Lisboa no Cais da Memória de Eduardo Gageiro, focandose na análise – à luz da fotografia da rua humanista Francesa – da representação feita do período entre o desfecho da II guerra e o fim da ditadura. Sustenta-se que as imagens contidas se assemelham àquilo que Peter Hamilton chamou de 'paradigma representacional' da fotografia de rua francesa e que, ao compará-las a este paradigma, podemos traçar os parâmetros da imagem da época construída em Lisboa no Cais da Memória. Faz-se amiúde a crítica que a fotografia da rua humanista Francesa representa o passado recente de forma idealista. Embora exista um traço de sentimentalismo na obra de Gageiro, esta faceta é equilibrada pelo engajamento frontal com as condições vigentes em Lisboa sob o regime Salazarista. Dentro do contexto das imagens, o saudosismo que provoca Lisboa no Cais da Memória pode servir para interrogar não só as qualidades do passado mas também a natureza do presente e a sua distância de condições já históricas.

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Castro, Paul Melo e