Pedro E. Guerrero (September 5, 1917 – September 13, 2012) was an American photographer. Known for his extraordinary access to Frank Lloyd Wright, he was one of the most sought-after architectural photographers of the 1950s. In a career shift that was part serendipity and part the result of being black-listed by the major shelter magazines for his stance against the Vietnam War, he later concentrated on documenting the work and lives of two important American artists, Alexander Calder and Louise Nevelson.
Guerrero was born in Casa Grande, Arizona, to Rosaura and Pedro W. Guerrero, a sign painter who much later would found Rosarita, one of the first commercial Mexican food companies in the United States. The Guerrero family moved to a one-room house built on the footprint of a tent platform in Mesa, Arizona, soon after his birth. All his life, Guerrero spoke bitterly of the casual bigotry he encountered growing up in Mesa, and he viewed his acceptance in 1937 to the Art Center School, then in Los Angeles, as deliverance. He took up photography only because the painting classes were filled, but “The minute I made my first print,” he said, “I thought, This is mine. This is for me. This is a magic that I can control.” His seven-decade career in photography began in 1939 when the architect Frank Lloyd Wright impulsively hired him to record the ongoing construction at his winter home, Taliesin West, in Scottsdale, Arizona. Just 22 and an Art Center dropout, Guerrero had never seen anything like Wright’s “desert camp,” and he decided to treat it exactly as it appeared to him, as sculpture. The resulting photographs pleased the architect, and Wright soon invited him to join his Fellowship. Guerrero recorded the original Taliesin in Spring Green, Wisconsin, and other Wright projects before enlisting in the Army Air Corps in 1941. He was stationed in Italy, where he was a photo officer, running a laboratory that developed film taken from planes during bombing runs.