Permeable membranes

The archive in visual atlas constructions


  • Amalia Caputo Universitat Oberta de Catalunya



photography, memory, archive, material culture, visual atlas


This study examines three large photo-based installations in which the role of memory construction in photography is explored, with emphasis on the concept of image accumulation in the digital era. These installations aim to restore photography as object while exploring the immersive and experiential qualities of physical environments filled with images, in opposition to the digital experience through screens. The visual essay delves into the evolving relationship between photography, the archive and its transformative nature, as it transitions from a digital transient realm, and returns to a physical manifestation (Art Installation, Atlas). The focus on building thematic “Atlases” that serve as spaces for interpretation, draws inspiration from Georges Didi-Huberman’s take on Aby Warburg’s Mnemosyne Atlas. The works created aim to contextualize the symbolic universe of images, and the construction of visual atlases as historical archives creating permeable and tangible membranes that provide evidence of our contemporary visual experience.



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Author Biography

Amalia Caputo, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya

Amalia Caputo is a visual artist and researcher whose work focuses on ideas of nature and the body, archiving and collecting in photographic practice. She is a second-year  PhD candidate at Universitat Oberta de Catalunya. She holds an MA in photographic studies from New York University and the International Center of Photography (1995) and a BA in Art History from Universidad Central de Venezuela (1988).Her work has been exhibited widely in Venezuela, Spain, United States, and South America, including Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation (Cifo) Miami; Galería de Arte Nacional, Caracas; Museum of Latin American Art (Molaa), Los Ángeles, among others.


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How to Cite

Caputo, A. (2024). Permeable membranes: The archive in visual atlas constructions. Archivo Papers, 4, 167–181.



Visual Essays