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Impressions Gallery

exhibitions: past

The Factory of Dreams

Stefan Ruiz

25th Jun - 20th Aug 2005

In an international premiere, Mexican American photographer Stefan Ruiz captures the stars, sets and melodrama of 'telenovelas' - Latin American soap operas.

For the past two years Ruiz has gained special access to the TV studios of Mexican media giant Televisa, known as 'The Factory of Dreams', where crews work year round to produce 50,000 hours worth of telenovelas annually for export to 110 countries.

Taking us behind the scenes, Ruiz reveals a vast industry virtually unheard of in the West, but adored throughout Latin America and the non-Western world. These tales of revenge, love and intrigue have captivated viewers as far afield as the Philippines, Eastern Europe and Russia, where the soap Los Ricos Tambien Lloran (The Rich Also Cry) became the most watched TV series in history, with 200 million regular viewers.

The exhibition includes large scale colour photographs of the elaborate and surreal studio sets with their giant photographic backdrops, portraits of the stars on set and in action, and students of the Televisa 'soap school' where young hopefuls are groomed for future stardom. This world of beautiful women, handsome men and rags-to-riches stories belies a subtext of social aspiration and entrenched racial hierarchies.

An Impressions Gallery Touring Exhibition


Click here to find out more about the accompanying imPRESS publication, The Factory of Dreams.

Filming (praying) from The Factory of Dreams

Filming (praying) from The Factory of Dreams

Stefan Ruiz

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Filming (praying) from The Factory of Dreams 'Nora' from The Factory of Dreams