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Gabriel Fernández Ledesma

El orador pueblerino, ca. 1928

Oleo / madera
53 x 39 cm
GFL002

The critical attitude vis-à-vis the politicization of culture is mostly unknown outside of Mexico, especially because these allusions, in painting, were generally based on metaphors - as Antonio Ruiz - or through caricatured irony and satire as by José Celemte Orozco. In contrast, in El orador pueblerino, Fernández Ledesma returns to a deformed gesticulation and to the anarchist aesthetics of German expressionism, as if he was a George Grosz, as well as a chromaticism and plasticity which could be related to the fauves; except that in this case they have been transposed to the context of a discursive rhetoric of the governors of post-revolutionary Mexico who were seeking to win over the voting population, many times illiterate, to ascend the posts in power and improve economically. Whether or not the Mexican painters had personal political ties and, eventually, an awareness of the social inequalities, does not mean that the content of their artistic production had the same characteristics as propaganda, and even less, their languages were subject exclusively to a social realism.

Cf. Judith Alanis in the Exhibition Catalog of the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes,

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Francisco Díaz de León Fund