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Guardias de asalto en la calle Diputació, Barcelona (Assault Guards in Diputació Street, Barcelona)

  • Date: 
    1936 / Vintage print
  • Technique: 
    Gelatin silver print and ink on paper
  • Dimensions: 
    Image: 16,3 x 24 cm / Support: 20,3 x 25,3 cm
  • Category: 
    Photography
  • Entry date: 
    2010
  • Register number: 
    AD05789
In the early days of the Spanish Civil War, forces supporting the coup rose up against the local government of the Generalitat de Cataluña in Barcelona, resulting in bitter clashes in the streets of the Catalan capital. The national army’s uprising was crushed in a resounding republican victory, placing the real power in the hands of the militia. Valencian photographer Agustí Centelles was one of the first people to record the brutality of the running battles in the streets on the 19th of July 1936, as in this shot taken on the corner of the streets Diputació and Roger de Llúria, in which assault guards are taking cover behind the bodies of massacred horses that had probably been pulling national army artillery. Although the guards were posing after the battle was over, and the photograph was cropped to take out another figure that lessened the dramatic impact, the picture became an iconic image of the war that was seen around the world – as can be seen from this Canadian copy. It was published in numerous media including La Vanguardia and on the front pages of Paris-Soir, Newsweek and the Madrid newspaper Ahora.

Almudena Cruz Yábar

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Agustí Centelles Artworks in the collection

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