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.
This essay is a severe critique of the literary figures that at that time served as art critics in Mexico. According to the author they critiqued art although they possessed no knowledge of the field. For Carlos Mérida, Saturnino Herrán’s art captured nothing inherently Mexican, apart from the models he used as subjects. The Guatemalan painter also presents his ideas concerning the nationalist painting that, in his opinion, consisted of merging the essence of native art with the look and feel of current times, not within its theatrical or exteriorized forms, but rather in its gist, its mood. Mérida recognizes Roberto Montenegro as one of the few artists that has created a truly nationalist painting.
This is one of the nine articles that Carlos Mérida (1891-1984) published in the newspaper El Universal Ilustrado shortly after his arrival and permanent establishment in Mexico City. It was published on July 20, 1920. Through his writings, Mérida covers a span of more than six decades of the art world in Mexico. His vision, fiercely critical and seductive, reflects the thoughts of a person who not only shared the space and time of the diverse developments of art, but who also contributed new readings and distinct analytical viewpoints from those that marked his era. The painter not only wrote about the evolution of the visual arts in Mexico, but also on the topics of caricature, photography, dance, film, design and folk art both in Mexico, as in his native Guatemala. In addition, Mérida also wrote profound reflections on the composition, meaning and function of art.