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 article reviews an exhibition of children’s drawings held in Brussels, to which Mexico sent a group of works by children from official schools. The author emphasizes the great reception that the Mexican works received and he transcribes part of an article from the Belgian press written by the critic Julien Fischer, who praises the teaching of drawing in Mexico. He considers the works to be free and imaginative, without methods that restrict the children’s creativity. Also, Fischer describes the artistic character of the works as pervaded by folkloric and racial traditions, as well as a great nationalistic sentiment.
This article’s importance stems from its relation to the historical process of arts education in Mexico, as well as the legitimacy that the post-revolutionary government sought abroad through the creation of a nationalist art that was the product of its working classes. The text can be interpreted from two perspectives. At first, it refers to a 1930 exhibition in Brussels, Belgium, of children’s drawings produced from the official Mexican schools of art. But by citing the art critic Julián Fisher—who praises the show for its selection of works that denote a markedly artistic character—the article takes on another meaning. It shows a genuine interest in summarizing the triumphs of the children’s works abroad but, at the same time, it highlights the importance and significance of the production being done at the Sección de Dibujo del Departamento de Bellas Artes [Drawing Section of the Department of Fine Arts]. Interestingly, at the time, financial support had been withdrawn from the Sección. During the 1920s, children’s arts education—represented by the Escuelas al Aire Libre [Open-Air Schools] and also by the Departamento de Bellas Artes through its Sección de Dibujo—was seen as generating a true Mexican art, along with the first murals. The project was dismantled at the start of the following decade.