The Mexican Suitcase gives the public an opportunity to experience images drawn from this famous collection of recovered negatives. In December 2007, three boxes filled with rolls of film, containing 4,500 35mm negatives of the Spanish Civil War by Robert Capa, Gerda Taro, and Chim (David Seymour), —which had been considered lost since 1939,— arrived at the International Center of Photography. These three photographers, who lived in Paris, worked in Spain, and published internationally, laid the foundation for modern war photography. Their work has long been considered some of the most innovative and passionate coverage of the Spanish Civil War (1936–-1939). Many of the contact sheets made from the negatives are on view as part of the exhibition, which look closely at some of the major stories by Capa, Taro, and Chim as interpreted through the individual frames. These images are seen alongside the magazines of the period in which they were published and with the photographers' own contact notebooks. The exhibition is organized by ICP Curator Cynthia Young.


This exhibition is available for tour. If you are interested in finding out about availability or to reserve a slot on the tour, please contact or 212.857.9738.

Exhibition Specs

Content: 100 contact sheets, 70 framed photographs, 60 periodicals, 2 films

Approximate running length: 300 feet/90 meters

Tour Venues


Rencontres d'Arles Photographie | Arles, France
July 4–September 18, 2011

Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya | Barcelona, Spain
October 6, 2011–January 15, 2012

Museo de Bellas Artes Bilbao | Bilbao, Spain
February 27–June 10, 2012

Circulo de Bellas Artes | Madrid, Spain
July 15–September 30, 2012

Musée d'art et d'histoire du Judaïsme | Paris, France
February 27–June 30, 2013

Antiguo Colegio de San Ildefonso | Mexico City, Mexico
October 8, 2013–February 9, 2014


Centre d'Art Contemporain Walter Benjamin | Perpignan, France
September 21, 2014–January 5, 2015

Open Society Archives, Central European University | Budapest, Hungary
December 18, 2015–February 21, 2016

La Caixa Cultural | São Paulo, Brazil
July 23–October 2, 2016

Córdoba Photography Biennial, Sala Vimcorsa | Córdoba, Spain
March 23–May 21, 2017

Special Thanks

This exhibition and its catalogue were made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Arts, Joseph and Joan Cullman Foundation for the Arts, Frank and Mary Ann Arisman, Christian Keesee, and by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Additional support was received from Sandy and Ellen Luger, Bruce and Lois Zenkel, the Strand Hotel, New York, the Program for Cultural Cooperation between Spain's Ministry of Culture and United States Universities, and the Consulate General of Spain in New York.