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.
Rufino Tamayo clarifies his position on a variety of subjects and controversies that have dogged his artistic work. He touches on the debate between nationalism and universalism, and refers to the subjects that he considers appropriate for Mexican art. Tamayo also defends his own aesthetic development and presents himself as a painter with academic training but also with the sensibility of his native roots. In this interview, Tamayo portrays himself as an artist who lacks both the support of the government and the recognition of Mexican critics; he does, however, claim that he is validated by his success abroad.
Through a series of convincing statements in which Rufino Tamayo (1899-1991) defines his attitude and the self-image he seeks to project, it can be understood how the artist constructed his own myth. Thanks to his ability to manipulate both the press and the critics through the arguments that he consistently relied upon, Tamayo alternately referred to his preconceived "indigenous origin" and his supposedly "marginal condition" which excluded him from any state patronage. This article helps to explain the artist's great skill in manipulating controversial issues and in establishing and polishing--in Mexico and abroad--the image that made him the standard bearer of "the other" possible Mexican School of Painting. Little attention is paid here to the patronage and the close relationship with the government that he in fact enjoyed even though this interview was conducted shortly after he had finished painting his murals at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City.