Delve in a historical and exciting era 

A work reflecting the totality of a unique collection of postmortem photographs, from the birth of the photographic technique in 1839 during the Victorian era until well into the 20th century. The haunting beauty of the photographs, as well as their artistic and anthropological value, capture a widespread practice in a society that sought to honor their loved ones by immortalizing their memory.

An exclusive edition of 1,839 copies numbered and signed by the author, Virginia de la Cruz, and the collector and co-publisher, Carlos Areces, along with a certificate of authenticity, which has become a collector’s must-have for lovers of photography and unique pieces.

Post Mortem. Collectio Carlos Areces allows us to delve into another era through photographs that capture a unique and inimitable moment in the lives of these families.


Limited Edition, only 1,839 copies




Post Mortem arises from the boundless curiosity and dedication of collector Carlos Areces.  Each photograph is both a small reward and a heartfelt tribute to those who endured much harsher times than those we know today. With a PhD in Art History and considered to be the leading expert in post-mortem photography, author Virginia de la Cruz provides a thorough study of this practice through her text to create, together with the pictures, a work of great social and artistic value, a must for the most devoted collectors.


Unique moments from over 15 countries

In this work, you will discover unpublished photographs, where the solemnity of the moment, steeped in the great sorrow caused by the loss of a loved one, transcends the paper and impacts the reader, acknowledging an inter-generational feeling that must not be forgotten. They reach an even greater significance when portraying young children, offering a striking contrast between the naturalness sought in the photograph and the irrationality of the early loss of a child.


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Available in large format and bilingual English/Spanish, this limited edition of 1,839 copies abounds with a wealth of details that will amaze even the most curious among us, courtesy of the dedicated attention paid to each piece that makes up the work. Finished in art paper with a velvet hard cover, a ribbon bookmark and gold stamping, it will delight collectors seeking to hold a piece of history in their hands


Alejandro Amenábar, director of the internationally known and acclaimed film The Others was entrusted with the presentation of the book. His contribution is far from trivial, as it was precisely this work that first inspired Carlos Areces to begin this unique collection.

In his introduction, the director reveals what discovering the theme of death was like for him, and how it influenced him during his productions.


Staring into the dead man’s eyes no longer frightens me.”

Alejandro Amenábar




Virginia de la Cruz Lichet (Chartres, 1978) is a tenured professor at the University of Lorraine and a member of the Centre de recherche Ecritures (Universitè de Lorraine, France). Considered the main European expert in post-mortem photography, she has a PhD in History of Art from the Complutense University of Madrid (2010), and her thesis is entitled Post-mortem photographic portraits in Galicia: 19th and 20th Centuries. Her research focuses on the role of art and photography in the processes of mourning and the cult of memory, both through the photography of the deceased —from the 19th century to the present day— as well as through more contemporary art. Some of her most prominent publications include: Portraits and death (Madrid: Temporae, 2013); Imatges de mort; and Photographic representations of the death ritual (Valencia: Museu Valencià d’Etnología, 2017.)

Virginia autora de Postmortem book
Carlos Areces Collectio Postmortem book



Actor Carlos Areces is a keen collector of comics, books, albums, toys and vintage photography (post mortem in particular). For more than 16 years, he has looked for them in old markets, antique shops, auction houses and websites, in Europe, USA and wherever they could be found. Fascinated by the beauty of these old images and the vast amount of feelings they prompt, his incredible collection is reproduced in its entirety in this book, and constitutes a visual proof of what is considered the Golden Era of this practice, approximately from the middle of the 19th century to the first half of the 20th century.


Post Mortem isn’t merely a book. Against a historical backdrop and backed by the academic study of a fascinating period, this unique collection of photographs is an authoritative portrait of an era and the echo of a storm of feelings that transcends epochs. Collectors will be rewarded with a work that crowns over 15 years of labor and offers a truly singular experience on a remarkably captivating subject, one that mustn’t be forgotten.



pages of previously unpublished photographs


prints to be framed



Funeral sash with the inscription In memoriam

Facsimile reproduction of a commemorative card

Artisanal handmade case, Oval acrylic glass die-cutting, fabric binding, gold stamping, and UVI varnish.

A unique work for collectors and photography lovers

Order this unique work, limited to 1,839 copies worldwide, at the exclusive presale price of $265





Portmortem book elementos
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