Dieselpunk + Steampunk Culture

Horacio Coppola, Buenos Aires from the 30's


Horacio Coppola was an Argentine photographer and filmmaker, born in Buenos Aires. His formation was based on two trips to Europe, where he got in touch with the interwar Germany and studied in Berlin in the Department of Photography at the Bauhaus, with U.S. photographer Walter Peterhans (1897–1960). 


Av. Corrientes view from the building COMEGA, 1936.


There he met the German photographer Grete Stern, whom he was later to marry and with whom he started a studio for publicity photography in Buenos Aires in 1937 and worked as a photography teacher.

Av. Corrientes and Uruguay, 1936

In 1930, Jorge Luis Borges insisted on using the little-known photographs of his friend Horacio Coppola to illustrate the first edition of his book about the poet Evaristo Carriego. The book made Coppola's name. He became celebrated for his nocturnal shots of his native Buenos Aires, as well as his Bauhaus-influenced images of everyday objects, such as intricately coiled balls of twine.

Opera Theater, 1936


Horacio Coppola's work is part of the Modernism in Argentina. He was part of the circle of intellectuals and artists of the twentieth century.  Coppola, who has died aged 105, worked primarily in black and white, and his photography keenly evoking sensations of time and place, has the scent of nostalgia. With his camera, he expressed his love of the city, its architecture and its people.


Florida and Bartolomé Mitre, 1936.


He introduced avant-garde photography to Argentina, died on June 18 in Buenos Aires. He was 105.

Obelisco, 1936.


Fundación Telefónica in Madrid opens the exhibition space with the largest photographic retrospective of Horacio Coppola made ​​in Spain. (spanish audio)

In a clip from "Ringl and Pit" the great Argentine photographer Horacio Coppola talks about his relationship with Grete Stern (later briefly his wife) and Ellen Auerbach, who had started the "ringl + pit" photo studio in Berlin in 1929. The all worked together in a fun little film where Coppola tries to pick up . (english audio)


Music by Astor Piazzolla "Canto y Fuga" (Tango).  Photograph by Horacio Coppola. (music language)

Sources and Links:



Michael Hoppen Gallery


The Guardian (Obituary)



Revista Ñ, Clarín. (Entrevista)

btbwarchitecture (Entrevista)

El angel caído (Photos)

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Comment by Cap'n Tony on September 27, 2012 at 11:08pm

This guy is a lost treasure!  Fantastic! 

And Sr. Piazzolla is inspiring an upcoming episode of the Cabaret...m'lady, please message me with your thoughts on Buenos Ares in the 50's...

Comment by Stefan on September 24, 2012 at 7:51am

Amazing, just amazing! Thank you so much. Makes me feel like to go there and then like... just now. And the music of Piazolla as the icing on this wonderful cake. I wonder how much of all this is left, now. Buenos Aires... the most Parisian of foreign cities, as French like to say.

Comment by N. Inmunsapá on September 24, 2012 at 1:14am

Very well!

A very complete article and wonderfull pics, of course

Comment by Lady Smoke on September 23, 2012 at 11:53pm

You're welcome, glad you like it and I upload an album with almost 50 photos of his work..:-)

Comment by Pablo J. Alvarez on September 23, 2012 at 9:17pm

Thanks, really nice article. 

Comment by lord_k on September 23, 2012 at 10:36am

Great article, wonderful photographs - and thanks a lot for useful links.

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