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Synopsis

This newspaper article includes part of a lengthy lecture on Mexican mural painting that David Alfaro Siqueiros gave during a visit to Brazil. The artist mentions his involvement in the Mexican Revolution (1910–20), talks about working with the Sindicato de Obreros Técnicos, Pintores y Escultores (the union that published a manifesto in 1923), and discusses the “need” for a proletarian kind of art that could be used to “educate the masses” and “agitate for recognition of social rights.” He reviews certain aspects of (visual and experimental) versions of Mexican muralism in terms of the (Renaissance) fresco technique that was also used in their way by Mexican Indians, and describes how that form of painting on fresh plaster panels and on large walls was adapted to express social issues “aimed at the masses”—a sort of tropical realism. In his lecture, Siqueiros talks about the rupture that occurred among muralists, mainly over ideological differences. He stresses his close relationship with the working class and his subsequent attempt to replace the mythical nature of mural painting with a “dynamic form of expression” that could encapsulate the desire to change Mexican society.  

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Synopsis

A reportagem reproduz parte da conferência de Siqueiros sobre a pintura mural mexicana. O artista conta, por exemplo, com a colaboração do Sindicato dos Artistas com a Revolução Mexicana (1910) e fala sobre a "necessidade" de uma concepção proletária da arte que sirva, ao mesmo tempo, como "educação coletiva" e como "fermento para as reivindicações sociais". Relata, ainda, aspectos da pesquisa desenvolvida por muralistas no México acerca da técnica do afresco utilizada por índios mexicanos e a adaptação dessa pintura feita sobre reboco fresco em painéis e muros de grandes dimensões, em linguagem destinada "às massas", com temas sociais: uma espécie de realismo dos trópicos. Nesta conferência, Siqueiros menciona o racha no grupo dos muralistas mexicanos por questões ideológicas, sua ligação com os operários do país e seu desejo posterior de substituir o caráter mítico da pintura mural por uma "expressão dinamista", que sintetizasse o desejo de transformações na organização da sociedade mexicana.

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Annotations

Lurking in the background of this lecture given by David Alfaro Siqueiros (1896–1974) was the specter of his voluntary exile, prompted by his involvement in the miners’ strikes in the state of Jalisco, Mexico (1930). He was imprisoned as a result of that involvement and was later placed under house arrest in Taxco (Guerrero, 1931). He subsequently left Mexico and traveled widely, developing his concept of group mural projects that he called Equipo Poligráfico Ejecutor. The first of these projects was the mural América Tropical (1932), created with several artists from Los Angeles (California). Later, while in Uruguay and Argentina, he worked with a group of artists from the River Plate region (Antonio Berni, Lino Enea Spilimbergo, Juan C. Castagnino, and Enrique Lázaro) to produce Ejercicio Plástico, painted on the walls of the basement of Quinta Los Granados (a country home in Don Torcuato, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires). Manuel Serrano salvaged the mural, and it is now on public display at the Museo del Bicentenario (1810–2010), just behind the Casa Rosada in Buenos Aires.   

 

Another document, written by the painter and sculptor Flávio de Carvalho (1899–1973)—“Recordação do Clube dos Artistas Modernos” [doc. no. 781340]—describes the founding of CAM (Clube dos Artistas Modernos), an occasion that included the painters Emiliano Di Cavalcanti, Carlos Prado, and Antonio Gomide. The original goal of the club was to organize activities as a “group model of public action.” In addition to talks given by the art critics Mário Pedrosa and Caio Prado, the document mentions the presence of the Mexican muralist David Alfaro Siqueiros, whom the author considers “more flamboyant as a speaker than as a painter.”  

 

This newspaper article describes the lecture that Siqueiros gave at CAM to an audience of people from São Paulo in 1933. The club membership consisting of artists and intellectuals, under Carvalho’s leadership, organized art exhibitions, lectures, and musical, dance, and theatrical performances in 1933 and 1934. 

 

This article reflects the interest generated by the exchange of ideas and artistic experimentation among Latin American countries. It also sheds light on the political movements that were part of modern art at the time, such as Expressionism, Social Realism, and mural painting.

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Annotations

Reportagem sobre a conferência realizada por David Alfaro Siqueiros, no Club dos Artistas Modernos (CAM), em São Paulo, em 1933. Núcleo de artistas e intelectuais encabeçado por Flavio de Carvalho, o CAM promoveu exposições de arte, conferências, apresentações de música, dança e teatro, em sua sede, no centro da cidade, entre 1933 e 1934.

 

a- Intercâmbio de idéias e difusão artística entre países do continente

e- Tendências políticas da arte moderna: expressionismo, realismo social, pintura mural

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Researcher
José Augusto Ribeiro; Maria Cecília França Lourenço,collaborator
Team
FAPESP, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Location
Biblioteca Municipal Prestes Maia, São Paulo