Mexican art speaks to all cultures


THE MEETING OF TWO WORLDS — Pedro Friedeberg made this screenprint to act as a symbol of the Mesoamerican and European historical influences. (Photo by Annah Duffey)

The Kruizenga Art Museum is hosting an exhibit called “After the Rupture” that will remain in the building until Dec. 17. The focus is on Mexican artists that make up the “Rupture Generation” and the new direction they were taking Mexican art during the mid-twentieth century.
These artists were considered rebellious from the ideas of the Mexican Muralist School, according to the informational board in the gallery. The Muralists would combine “European social realism with indigenous Mexican folk art,” while the “Rupture Generation” sought to create art through a larger variety of styles.

There are 32 different pieces in the museum. Some of the most notable artwork in the exhibit includes “Untitled” by Kurt Larisch, “Macbeth” by José Luis Cuevas and “Woman Drinking” by Francisco Zunigo.
“Untitled” is a simple looking piece, depicting a gray wall with peeling paint that has the primary colors underneath. The description reads that it “…belongs to a larger body of the artist’s work in which a plain surface seems to peel back, revealing brighter colors below.” This could be an emphasis on how we have more to offer under the surface or that, despite our different backgrounds, we have the same basic qualities throughout the human race.

Cuevas made a piece about Macbeth, whose mind intrigued him, as can be displayed through the many emotions and figures that fill up the space where the man’s brain should be. Every mind is made up of hundreds of thoughts and Cuevas tried to capture that essence.

Zunigo’s piece on a woman was the most intriguing one of all. It was exactly what one would expect from the title: a woman drinking. Oftentimes, artwork will portray women as sexual, alluring, hardworking, motherly — anything but ordinary. To have a woman sitting on a chair with a bottle in hand is rebellious to most twentieth century artwork indeed.
Hope College and the city of Holland both played a large role in putting this exhibition together. The gallery was made possible by the Departments of Art and Modern and Classical Languages, the Office of Multicultural Education and the Latin Americans United for Progress. Not only is it a glimpse at different cultures around the world, but it “increases students’ global awareness and capacity for cross-cultural understanding.”

All of the aforementioned pieces share one commonality: people are more than meets the eye. How much have we wished that others could understand that? Everyone is worth more than vague exteriors and has more to offer than cultural stereotypes. The museum is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. Events in conjunction with the exhibit are to come.

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