A modern gaze on traditional cultural practices in Argentina and Latin America: relocation and preservation of the ‘Heinrich Sanguinetti Archive’ (1930-1980) (EAP899)

Aims and objectives

This project will continue the cataloguing and digitisation of the Heinrich-Sanguinetti photographic archive that began with the EAP755 pilot project. This is an invaluable, largely unpublished archive of images featuring various territories, species, ethnic groups, and cultural practices of Argentina and Latin America. The archive also contains printed material, such as magazine clippings, catalogues and personal correspondence that provide further information on the photographer´s perspective. The ethnographic and historical value of the Heinrich-Sanguinetti collection make it of most importance since it provides sources for future studies about the culture, the life, growth and changes of many Latin American countries. The distinctive element that defines this collection is the fact that it tells us much about the transition of pre-modern to modern Latin America. It has great value for researchers studying the tensions involved in the process of modernisation in Latin America.

In Argentina, there is no organised and articulated policy regarding the conservation of photographic archives, either public or private ones. In this sense, the “Heinrich-Sanguinetti” archive is an example of how many photographic collections in Argentina are tied to the fate given by their heirs or owners. Because of these reasons, and in order to prevent any damage to the collection, Alicia and Ricardo Sanguinetti, owners of the mentioned archive and holders of one of the most important private photographic collections in Argentina decided to ask the Universidad Nacional de Tres de Febrero (UNTREF) for assistance. This University was chosen because within the last years its Institute for Research in Art and Culture "Dr. Norberto Griffa" has developed an archive policy program regarding the conservation, cataloguing and digitisation of different collections that were donated to the institution, with the purpose of opening them to the public. The goal of the heirs of Annemarie Heinrich’s collection was to establish an agreement aimed at the protection and research of this valuable collection. The Heinrich-Sanguinetti Archive is located in a place that, in spite of the owner´s care, needs better conservation conditions in terms of space, light, temperature and humidity control. Its unique cultural and research significance will be preserved, continuing the work that was started by EAP755 and the project will complete the relocation of the material, together with the cataloguing and digitisation so as it can be open to international specialised researchers and the public domain.


After 18 months working under the major project (EAP 899) the following results were achieved:

1.  organisation, cataloguing and digitising of the following:

- 6X6 black and white negatives (1614)

- 6X6 colour reversal films (1617)

- 9x12 negatives (28)

- 6x9 negatives (20)

- 35mm colour reversal films (564)

- 35mm black and white negatives (2530)

- 4 boxes of printed photographs, with the photographer’s handwritten notes at the back. 279 copies in total.

- 10 photographic albums containing clippings, signed photographs, photo gallery invitations and references.

- 53 Printed catalogues of A. Heinrich´s exhibitions.

- 9 Cardboard folders containing photographic contacts organized by theme and categories by the photographer.

- 5 Cardboard folders containing photographic contacts with the photographer’s handwritten notes and references on exhibitions and awards.

- 3 Interviews on TV programmes to photographer A. Heinrich that were on VHS.

All of which resulted in a deeper knowledge of Annemarie Heinrich´s production as a modern photographer.

2. Also included in this project was the Archivo Heinrich Sanguinetti in Archivo IIAC, an archive that belongs to UNTREF Arts Department (http://archivoiiac.untref.edu.ar/index.php/archivo-instituto-de-investigaci-n-en-arte-y-cultura-dr-norberto-griffa) and that is part of Red ILIA, an iniciative of Universidad Nacional de las Artes from Ecuador (http://www.uartes.edu.ec/investigacion/)