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.
Miguel Angel Rozzisi writes about Antonio Berni’s art as though it has overcome the decadence of the system. He maintains the existence of class warfare between the official culture and that of the people, with Berni as the representative for the vanguard of the people’s national culture. Rozzisi even places the artist amid the historical dispute between these two cultures. The article also includes the opinions of the critic Gerald Gassiot-Talabot, born in Algeria, and those of the Argentine critic Hugo Parpagnoli.
One of the most outstanding creators in 20th century Argentina is undoubtedly the Rosario born Antonio Berni (1905-81). He studied in Europe beginning in 1925, while living in Paris he connected with the surrealist avant-garde as well as with communism. Upon his return to Argentina, he exhibited surrealist works at the Amigos del Arte [Friends of Art] in 1932. The following year Berni joined the Equipo Polígrafo [Polygraphic Team] (organized by David Alfaro Siqueiros) that went on to create the mural Ejercicio Plástico [Visual Arts Exercise] at Don Torcuato, in the outskirts of Buenos Aires. He developed his theory of Nuevo Realismo [New Realism], art with a political and social commitment, which was based on a transcendent realism. In 1944, Berni formed the Taller de Arte Mural [Mural Art Workshop]. During the 1950s, he created paintings of the peasantry, in particular those of the northern province of Santiago del Estero, which gave rise to his Juanito Laguna series of narrative collage paintings. In 1962, the artist won the Grand Prize for Engraving and Drawing at the Venice Biennale. The following year Berni began his Ramona Montiel series. During the 1960s and 1970s—at the same time that he was continuing to produce paintings, collages and engravings—he created objects, installations and happenings; he also explored different stylistic variations of realist figuration.This document is of interest because it shows how the leftist national culture accepted Antonio Berni’s work, considering him a national artist who was also part of the avant-garde and thus the expression of true realism. The article also reproduces fragments of writings on the artist by Hugo Parpagnoli, Louis Aragon and Gérald Gassiot-Talabot under the subtitle “and the critics say.” CERO [Zero] magazine, led by Vicente Zito, was one of the most distinguished cultural publications of the 1960s. Miguel Angel Rozzisi wrote realist and militant poetry. This magazine also published the writings of Ernesto Guevara and Ho Chi Min, along with surrealist and political poetry.