Sunday 23 August 2020

History of Photography and Film (Portugal, 1980)

Cinema was introduced to Portugal in 1896 with the screening of foreign films, with locally made films appearing very soon after. The first Portuguese made production was Saída do Pessoal Operário da Fábrica Confiança, a one-minute film of workers leaving a factory in Confiaça. Films were shown in tobacco shops and theatres until the first cinema opened in 1904. Portuguese film grew in both silent and, from 1933, talkie formats, with a Golden Age between 1933 and the early 1950s which maximised a realist style ahead of the Italian neorealism school that became more famous over time.

There is not so much that I can easily report about the history of photography in Portugal. There are records of photographs dating back to the 1850s (the same period that photography was pioneered in other Western European countries) but these are often credited to French photographers so more photos OF Portugal than photos BY Portugal. There are records of a Portuguese camera manufacturer in around 1900. But this one might need more research than a late Sunday evening will allow…

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