Margaret Watkins. Black Light

PHotoEspaña 2021
Margaret Watkins
Margaret Watkins. Untitled (Verna Skelton Posing for Cutex Advertisement), New York, 1924 © Margaret Watkins. Joseph Mulholland Collection, Glasgow
09.06 - 26.09.2021

Opening: 9th June, 12:30 p.m
Tuesday - Sunday, 10 am - 8 pm

Floor 5

The Canadian photographer Margaret Watkins contributed to forging the history of early twentieth-century photography with her unique contributions. Watkins lived a life of rebellion in which she rejected tradition and the gender roles assigned to women. She had a brilliant career in the 1920s and was one of the first female photographers to work in advertising photography. Her images of everyday objects became the paradigm on which the new standards of acceptable were built. 

Her modernist style revealed her ability to anticipate the major aesthetic and conceptual revolutions which would ensue. This is why Margaret Watkins can be considered the clear connection between a pictorialism in the quest for identity and avant-garde modernism. Her work engages in an incessant dialogue between art and domestic life, merging theme and object into the same thing, and she used this figure throughout her entire career in both her personal work and her advertisements for agencies like Condé Nast and Reimers and magazines like The New Yorker, Ladies’ Home Journal and Country.

This retrospective exhibition of her work, entitled Black Light and hosted at CentroCentro, shows 150 of the artist’s photographs dating from 1914 to 1939. They include portraits and landscapes, modern still lifes, street scenes, advertisements and commercial designs.