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Despite her brief career in photography, Tina Modotti is now considered one of its pre-eminent twentieth-century proponents. In a seven-year period she achieved a standard that other artists took a lifetime to reach, and recognition of the importance of her work in this field is evidenced by an ever-growing interest in the life and output of this remarkable woman and pioneer of modern photography. From an early age, Modotti was exposed to the most radical ideas of the first half of the twentieth century and she opted to ride the crest of the transformations these inspired. Though she was born more than a century ago, her story is essentially modern - rooted in being poor, female and foreign in America. Modotti's trajectory thrust her into the midst of some of the century's most dramatic experiences of social upheaval - post-revolutionary Mexico, Berlin during the rise of Fascism, early Stalinist Russia and Spain during the Civil War. She showed enormous personal courage, not only in life-threatening situations but also in her defiance of tradition, particularly in her emotional and career decisions. She chose sexual independence over marriage, political commitment in place of personal security and eventually revolution above art.