There is no doubt that photography is an art form. The photographer really does not know what the final shot will be until the button is pressed. Much has been written about the philosophy and psychology of that moment.
News photography has the additional element of haste. Some suggest famous news photos are the result of a lucky accident. But some photographers seem to be lucky most of the time. The secret is anticipation.
The Spanish news agency Agencia de Noticias EFE has had more than its share of lucky accidents. Some 75 historic photos will be on display at the Museo Nacional as the news service marks its 75th anniversary.
The agency began business in Spain in 1939, just in time for its photographer to catch Adolf Hitler with dictator Francisco Franco the following October strolling together. Since then the news service has covered nearly every worthwhile world event.
The agency, which goes by the name EFE, is not well known to English speakers because of its concentration on European and Latin American news in Spanish. Those who read La Nación or other newspapers here see the firm’s efforts every day.
The news service has been engaged actively in Latin America for 25 years, hence the name of the exhibit: “EFE: 75 años en fotos. 25 años construyendo América Latina.” Photography, of course, transcends language, so the exhibit does not require advanced Spanish.
The agency notes that it fully covered the Spanish monarchy, the 2010 earthquake in Haiti and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacked in the United States.
Other photos show the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., the Late Cuban singer Celia Cruz; Mario Moreno, the late Mexican comic actor known as Cantinflas; Fidel Castro; former Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez, and right up to the exchange of power when Luis
Guillermo Solís took office in May. There also are ample scenic and sports photos, the museum said.
The concept of constructing Latin America in the title of the exhibition refers to the many photos of infrastructure presented by EFE. These include the Panamá Canal and the hydro project Itaipú, the biggest in the world on the border of Brazil and Paraguay.
The news agency said it now has 3,000 correspondents in 120 countries. There is an office in San José.