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Monday, April 7, 2008

Leopoldo Mendez: Revolutionary Art and the Mexican Print

(University of Texas Press), by Deborah Caplow

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Diego Rivera was the star of the highly political Mexican art that emerged during the 1920 and ’30s, but the visual movements that arose in the country at the time produced other talents. Deborah Caplow chronicles the career of one such artist, Leopoldo Mendez (1902-1969), and shows many examples of his work. Mendez favored strong, direct images drawing from the vocabulary of Cubism, Expressionism and Futurism, but for him style was the means and not the end. Mendez was interested in raising the awareness of the Mexican masses to the richness of their heritage and potential. Several illustrations of prints from the start of the 20th century are included to show Mendez’s links to early folk-based traditions