The editorial categories are research topics that have guided researchers during the recovery phase and continue to be the impetus behind the Documents Project’s digital archive and the Critical Documents book series. Developed by the project’s Editorial Board, each of the teams analyzed this framework and adapted it to their local contexts in developing their research objectives and work plans during the Recovery Phase. Learn more on the Editorial Framework page.
In this article the Venezuelan researcher Alfredo Chacón discusses the Venezuelan concept of popular art. He asks: When do we talk about popular art? He goes on to explore different social factors that define what Venezuelans consider “popular.” Among them, he mentions the coexistence of two social classes with very different purchasing power, the pre-established (prejudiced) parameters of folklore and popular culture imposed by institutional education, ecclesiastical religion, state policy, industrial or mass culture, and many others forces.
This essay by the essayist and researcher Alfredo Chacón (b. 1937) appeared in the catalogue for the II Bienal Nacional Salvador Valero de Arte Popular (Trujillo, estado Trujillo, 1988). The essay is interesting because it approaches the question of popular art from a social perspective. Chacón discusses a number of Venezuelan society’s traits that undoubtedly help to determine the country’s concept and assessment of what is considered “popular” in this context, looking beyond the aesthetic and formal aspects of this form of artistic expression. He also suggests alternatives that contribute to the development and (theoretical and critical) appreciation of these arts.