A Respect for Light

Mario Algaze is the rare lensman with an innate talent for harnessing the subtle interplay of light and shadow to capture his subjects in a poetic and timeless fashion. The prominent Cuban-American photographer is celebrating "A Respect for Light: The Photography of Mario Algaze" at HistoryMiami (101 W. Flagler St., Miami), which features more than 150 of Algaze’s attention-commanding images shot throughout Latin America and the Caribbean over the past 40 years. The sprawling show, which marks his most ambitious exhibit to date and his first retrospective museum exhibition in more than a decade, will also include some of the shutterbug’s early concert photography, offering a rare look at South Florida’s vibrant musical history. Thursday from 6 to 8 p.m., you can catch Algaze’s intimate portrayal of life in Bolivia, Ecuador, Mexico, and Cuba, as well as other countries in the hemisphere, where Algaze has documented the people and places he’s visited soon after daybreak in the luminous conditions he favors. “The most important ingredient in my photographs is a very early-morning light, a magical light, which on most days only allows you about an hour to work,” Algaze explains. “There’s a certain quality before 9:30 in the morning, where light hits in a 45-degree angle and there are long shadows and soft light. If I could, I would light every scene, but I can’t. I have to rely on Mother Nature,” Algaze writes in the forward to his new book, A Respect for Light: The Latin American Photographs 1974-2008, which is being released in conjunction with the exhibition. Admission to the opening reception is free and includes complimentary wine, gourmet cheeses, and live music. Call 305-375-1492 or visit historymiami.org.
Mondays-Saturdays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sundays, 12-5 p.m. Starts: Nov. 13. Continues through Jan. 18, 2014
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