On 25 April 1974, Portuguese fascism was overthrown by a military coup. What ensued in the following five years was a complex and turbulent transition into democracy. The photobooks, pamphlets and postcards included in this exhibition are a record of that period and show how these objects functioned as instruments of celebration, propaganda, protest, recollection and questioning. These characteristics often overlapped in a single publication creating a powerful visual archive of the frenetic and unpredictable succession of events that marked this tense and exuberant period in recent Portuguese history.
By gathering and re-activating this vibrant material, this show reveals the crucial role these publications had in documenting and preserving the diverse ideological battlegrounds and key socio-political events that shaped Portugal’s initial steps towards democracy.
This exhibition is the first public display of a vast photobook selection that will be included in a study dedicated to contemporary Portuguese photobook practice to be published in 2022.
José Luís Neves