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.
Less than a month after the death of Diego Rivera, the journalist and author Elena Poniatowska interviewed some of Rivera’s closest friends, colleagues, and family members, with the objective of recording their memories of the artist. Poniatowska’s piece includes statements by Rivera’s daughters, Lupe and Ruth Rivera Marín, as well as the painters Fanny Rabel and Pablo O’Higgins. Rabel, in particular, recounts in great detail her memories of Rivera in 1942, when he was her professor at La Esmeralda, the Escuela de Artes Plásticas [School of Visual Arts]. She also recalls his support of the formation of “Los Fridos,” the group of students who wished to reclaim the muralism movement in Mexico and keep it alive.
This article is a spoken portrait of various aspects of the personality of Diego Rivera (1886–1957). Elena Poniatowska (b. 1932) even asks her interviewees about certain attitudes of Rivera’s that were questioned by the artistic community—quite delicate matters such as the implication that the painter “crushed” the rest of his artistic peers, or the “excessive praise” that Rivera heaped upon “some young people.” With regard to the latter, Poniatowska seems to be referring to statements Rivera made the year he died, in which he advocated Rufino Tamayo and Juan Soriano as the models to be followed in Mexican visual arts, which was an affront to muralism disciples such as Pablo O’Higgins and Fanny Rabel.