Comics: Six Hispanic Artists; Eduardo Barreto, Ernie Colon, Jose Delbo, Jose Luis Garcia-Lopez, Pablo Marcos, George Perez.-- New York, USA : INTAR Latin American Gallery, 1985.
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This text by Inverna Lockpez, curator and director of the INTAR Latin American Gallery in New York City, introduces the six Latin American and Latino comic strip artists whose work was included in the 1985 exhibition Six Hispanic Artists. The cartoonists are Eduardo Barreto (Uruguay), Ernie Colón (Puerto Rico), José Delbo (Argentina), José Luis García-López (Spain), Pablo Marcos (Peru), and George Pérez (United States). Because all artists but one were born outside the United States, the exhibition explored the differences and similarities between the art created before and after arriving in the U.S. Many of the artists began their careers in their home countries and later began working in the U.S. for well-known companies like Archie Comics, D.C. Comics, Charlton Comics, Marvel Comics, and Western Publishing, in addition to continuing their independent work.
As the director of INTAR (International Arts Relations) Gallery, Inverna Lockpez curated more than 100 exhibitions introducing themes and artists showing in New York for the first time. Her exhibition, Chicano Expressions: A New View in American Art (1986) was the first comprehensive exhibition of Chicano art in the Northeast and included more than 50 artists. Besides offering a detailed historical context for the comic strip created by U.S. artists, Lockpez’s introductory essay provides a social context for the different (and at many times, more subversive) imagery created by their Latin American counterparts. The essay is part of a poster-like design that is generously illustrated with examples of comic strip art and functions as an announcement poster and exhibition catalogue. A dual function as such allowed it to attract a wider and more non-traditional gallery audience. She was careful to include the artists’ accomplishments, as well as their contributions to a sociopolitical agenda. Thus, the document serves as a good example of how a popular art form (poster and comic strip art) can be elevated to art status by means of a well-curated exhibition that retained its aesthetic integrity and broadened its intended audience.