“Photography is the language of silence,” Flor Acosta
By Sandra Ríos
Flor Acosta, with over 25 years teaching photography and 10 years of living in San Miguel, began having tertulias fotográficas (photographic gatherings) due to her very personal inquisitiveness. Flor always found photographic interest in people in the city. Nevertheless, she realized that it did not go further than attending exhibitions and taking some photography courses. She decided it would be very interesting for photographers to share their experiences from a more playful aspect, not merely academic. “Photography is the language of silence,” says Acosta, “It is just a single visual language, and much inquietude remains in the pipeline.”
She started the gatherings in February 2013 at her own gallery, Atelier, in colonia Guadalupe. At first there was just a place to chat about photography. The first gathering started with four people but grew until the gallery was not large enough to hold so many people. Among the exhibitors at that time were Daniela Edburg, Norma Suarez and Giovana Canela. At the end of the year, Acosta decided to make a proposal to Bellas Artes to hold the gatherings there, with the aim of bringing in new people and growing even more. Since February this year, social gatherings are also held there on the last Thursday of every month.
The last gathering took place on July 31, with guest photographer Federico Vargas Somoza, who specializes mostly in creating photographic records for tourist media like magazines such as México Desconocido and books for the National Museum of Anthropology. He recently won first prize in the category of Festivities and Traditions at the Primer Concurso de Fotografía Patrimonio Cultural de Guanajuato (First Contest for Photography of Guanajuato’s Cultural Heritage) organized by the Instituto Estatal de la Cultura (State Institute of Culture) in conjunction with the Museo Regional Alhondiga de Granaditas. He also won a special mention in the landscape category, and one of his photos of historical buildings was selected to be shown at upcoming exhibitions in different houses of culture in Mexico.
Vargas, a self-taught photographer for 25 years and an archaeologist by profession, began making photographic records of his archaeological expeditions. He discovered his love of photography and devoted himself to study, reading and specialization in this kind of art.
He still works with the magazine México Desconocido, and he is in charge of the general direction of the Instituto Municipal de la Cultura de Irapuato. “To travel is my inspiration; journeys are my creative process,” says Vargas. He researches, travels and talks to people and looks into the files. He takes the photo when he arrives at the chosen place by just watching the light. “It is like spying the right moment and taking the shot,” he says.