The author of this article, Catalonian-born and Cuba-based art critic Martí Casanovas (1894–1966), was one of the five founders of the ground-breaking journal that became known under its subtitle, revista de avance. The journal was launched in March 1927 and titled after the year of its publication. Its emergence was promptly followed by the exhibition under the same title, 1927, held at the association of Painters and Sculptors in Havana, between May 7 and 31, which featured such young vanguardia painters as Eduardo Abela (1889–1965), Carlos Enríquez (1900–1957), Antonio Gattorno (1904–1980), and Victor Manuel García (1897–1969). Casanovas followed this early manifesto by the lecture delivered at a closing reception of the exhibition, reprinted as Arte nuevo [New art] in the journal on June 15, 1927 (ICAA digital archive (832040)].
In his call to reject narrow, “mere” visual experimentation and innovation, Casanovas implicitly disavows such avant-garde trends as the Mexican stridentism [See (803840)] and the Spanish-originated ultraism, which many Latin American artists followed (732642). In contrast, he explicitly allies himself and his colleagues with the Mexican muralism. Later, Casanovas would also associate his position with that advocated by the Peruvian magazine Amauta, led by the Marxist thinker José Carlos Mariátegui. Casanovas’s texts demonstrates that he was well versed in the artistic tendencies and debates of his moment. As such, “Nuevos rumbos” is the key contribution to the formulation of new and socially progressive, modern American art.
This text was published in English in Mari Carmen Ramírez and Héctor Olea, eds., Inverted Utopias: Avant-Garde Art in Latin America (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2004), 469.