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 is dedicated to the memory of muralist José Clemente Orozco. The author, Antonio Rodríguez, describes one of the painter’s most grounded obsessions with regard to his artistic practice: the search for light, and the possibility of finding it and expressing it in his works, whether on murals or easels. This art critic, however, acknowledges that in the twilight of the painter’s life his obsession was transformed into a search for physical, radiant, optical light. In his studio Orozco carried out this quest by trying to find light and manage it from different perspectives. Through his description of the muralist’s house-studio in Guadalajara, Rodríguez explains the way in which Orozco himself organized, built, and decided upon the physical spaces of the room. After the painter died in 1949, the studio was converted into a museum through the initiative of his wife, Margarita Valladares de Orozco, and with the aid of the government of Jalisco and the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes [INBA, National Institute of Fine Arts]. The museum’s inauguration was the occasion for the publication of this article, which applauded the museographical work of Fernando Gamboa in coordination with the artist’s daughter, Lucrecia Orozco. Finally, Rodríguez recognizes that the house-studio (which was the repository of Orozco’s pictorial dreams, and which contains early sketches and drafts of important works) is absolutely imbued with the artist’s extraordinary personality.
This article celebrates the transformation in Guadalajara of the house-studio of José Clemente Orozco (1883–1949) into a museum, and Antonio Rodríguez (1914–1993), a writer and art critic of Portuguese origins who was exiled in Mexico, pays tribute to the painter’s aesthetic concerns mainly from the insight of luminosity. Moreover, this matter had a decisive influence upon the construction of the interior and exterior spaces of the house-studio. The distribution of this space, which was essentially not a home, but rather a pictorial workshop, was absolutely determined by the artist’s visual concerns. Rodríguez reveals this when noting that Orozco had a small studio next to his austere bedroom where he worked when awakened at night with an idea or a solution to a problem. The account makes it clear that life and dreams for Orozco were indeed coded by his visual experience. As such, his house was an innermost part of one and the same spirit, and the conservation of that as a museum is a great achievement and, also, of great patrimonial value for the Mexican people.