PARIS, Sep 27 (IPS) – So what is the difference between illustration and “art”? When asked this question, Maru Aguzzi responds with a wry smile: “Maybe the price?”
Aguzzi is the curator of Gran Salón México-Paris – Contemporary Mexican Illustration, an exhibition that takes place at the Mexican Cultural Institute in the French capital until October 26. The sample brings together some 40 illustrators, whose work includes painting, drawing, engraving, video and other genres.
The pieces are surprisingly artistic, even if they are presented as illustrations. All are “original” works created especially for this exhibition, which is the first in France at the Gran Salón México, an annual art fair that Aguzzi created in 2014.
The fair’s mission, he says, is to offer a glimpse into the country’s growing “wave” of illustration and bring to the public some of the best contemporary works in this category, a field that really “plays” with the limits of art.
“Saying that price makes a difference is maybe the funny answer, but you can dig deep and see how illustrators choose to explore content or not,” Aguzzi said. SWAN. “Because of the way the work is presented, viewers don’t have to search for content or meaning as in contemporary art, where the work requires some kind of commitment from the viewer for its completion. Illustration has an immediate impact and viewers may or may not like what they see. It’s that easy.”
Big roomThe participating illustrators use a variety of mediums as do their fellow “artists,” he said. The works in the show range from oil and acrylic paintings on canvas to charcoal drawings on paper. In between, viewers can enjoy watercolors, collage, animation, and digital art.
In fact, some of the illustrators also exhibit at art fairs, further blurring the distinctions, Aguzzi said. They draw on a long tradition of Mexican artists working in various genres, like the renowned painters Diego Rivera and Rufino Tamayo, whose influence can be felt in the current show, alongside that of multi-genre Spanish artist Pablo Picasso, for example.
Picasso and his paintings of women are evoked with a twist in the illustrations of Rocca Luis Cesar (born in Guadalajara in 1986), while the more “veteran” Carlos Rodríguez (born in La Soledad, San Luis Potosí, 1980) resorts to images – like watermelon – that appear in Tamayo’s paintings.
Both illustrators convey a strong artistic sensibility, and Rodríguez in particular draws inspiration from “classical painting, mythology, naive art, and porn,” as his biography says. His two vibrant erotic paintings in the show were created specifically to evoke a Latin American vibe in Paris, Aguzzi said.
Another notable aspect of the exhibition is its sense of humor or satire, in addition to the approach to serious issues, such as climate change and linguistic rights. One of the youngest illustrators, María Ponce, born in Oaxaca in 1994, exemplifies this with her color drawings about everyday life and with her piece “Growing Together”, which conveys the message that we have to take care of the environment and the trees if we want also I want to continue to prosper.
Meanwhile, illustrator and filmmaker Gabriela Badillo (born 1979) uses her work to highlight the indigenous languages of Mexico through her 68 Voices project, a series of videos with stories told in these languages. Badillo co-founded audiovisual production company Hola Combo with a belief in social media responsibility, according to the exhibition, and she and her colleagues have worked with indigenous groups, including children, on creative initiatives.
His videos, and other film clips and animation work, add to the unexpected scope of the Great Hall show.
“The work that illustrators are producing in Mexico includes numerous genres, and I really wanted to show this range,” Aguzzi said. SWAN.
© Inter Press Service (2021) – All rights reservedOriginal source: Inter Press Service