“Progressing. Looking to the future from the 19th century” in Koldo Mitxelena
It shows people going about their daily chores, on their way to the market or washing in the river, in a rapidly changing society that craved new developments and joined forces to achieve them.
This is the most important private collection made by a non-professional photographer, the San Sebastian businessman and councillor José Brunet Bermingham (1836-1891), an actor and privileged witness of the changes that were taking place, not only in his city, but also in a large part of Gipuzkoa, such as in Goierri, which he knew very well due to his family connections, as his wife was from Beasain.
With great control of the photographic technique, both in the shots and in the treatment of the plates, José Brunet has left us a magnificent collection of more than a thousand glass plates and photographs on paper dating from between 1865 and 1891, which was enlarged with another thousand contributed by his son Ubaldo, reaching up to the end of the 1930s.
This collection shows us a little-illustrated period, the last third of the 19th century, when, after the demolition of its walls, San Sebastian underwent the greatest urban transformation in its history, gaining land from the estuary and the sea. This was a period in which great innovations took place, such as the arrival of the railway, gas, running water, the tramway, electricity, etc., which improved the daily life of its inhabitants, while factories, commerce and the new tourism industry provided new jobs and future prospects, which also included women.
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