Contemporary Mexican art on view at City Arts Center

The City Arts Center at the state fairgrounds is showcasing an exhibit of works by contemporary Mexican artists called “Miradas: Ancient Roots in Modern and Contemporary Mexican Art.”
BY JOHN BRANDENBURG Published: February 19, 2012
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Tamayo's starkly simplified, earth-toned 1980 etching of a man's “Head with a Hat” is totem-like, while his lithograph of a dog, with a lurid open mouth, baying at the moon, has plenty of playful pizazz.

Cryptic and hard-hitting is “The Prisoner,” a tempera-charcoal drawing by Alfredo Ramos Martinez, of a captive in a sombrero, looking out helplessly from a claustrophobic forest of armed guards.

Masterful, too, is a rich, green-hued lithograph by Hungarian-Mexican artist Gunther Gerzso which translates the image of “a woman of the jungle” into flat, abstract shapes.

Among outstanding works by later artists are a stylized yet forceful acrylic-crayon profile of “The Warrior,” by Javier Chavira, and an abstract lithograph by Gustavo Ramos Rivera reminiscent of Arshile Gorky.

Three other excellent works are contributed by Graciela Iturbide, Miguel Castro Lenero and Alejandro Colunga.

A woman seems part of the oakum she is selling in Iturbide's black-and-white photograph, and the golden coil of a snail emerges from a scumbled blue “mountain” in Lenero's abstract oil painting.

Wildly animated and macabre is Colunga's 1980 lithograph of a masked, broadly gesturing, nearly monstrous “Boy with Tricycle.”

The exhibit shouldn't be missed during its run through May 4.

— John Brandenburg


ART REVIEW

‘Miradas: Ancient Roots in Modern

and Contemporary Mexican Art'

When: 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, through May 4.

Where: City Arts Center, 3000 Pershing Blvd.

Information: 951-0000 or www.cityartscenter.org.

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