Austria 1902 – Australia 1985
English red cross convoy in Portbou, 5 am, 6 June 1936
Materials & Technique: photographs, gelatin silver photograph
The outbreak of the Spanish Civil War in July 1936 brought about an immediate re-orientation in Margaret Michaelis’s practice. She began to work quickly for a propagandist purpose. Their role was to present ordinary Catalan citizens in a positive light as they worked cheerfully and productively in support of the Spanish Republic.
Michaelis also photographed the famous anarchist Emma Goldman, who visited Spain in 1936 to witness the gains being made by the anarcho-syndicalist movement.
Margaret and Rudolf Michaelis divorced in 1937. He remained in Spain to fight with the republicans and she returned to her family in Poland, having managed to secure the release of her photographic equipment and her photographs which eventually followed her to Australia
Text © National Gallery of Australia, Canberra