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Tropicalia by Unknown Artist

Tropicalia, 1940

Unknown Artist

This perfectly framed image of two women in swimsuits and heels has the quality of a candid snapshot, as if the women were caught in a private moment as one lights the other’s cigarette. The negative space between their bodies makes a sinuous, curving shape, broken at the top by sharply angled elbows engaged in their task. Silhouetted palm fronds frame the scene, and there’s a curious illumination on the rocks between the women’s feet. Is it the light from the unknown photographer’s camera? We may never know.

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Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
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