BRUSSELS.- What better way to start the spring than by marking the bicentenary of Mexicos independence and the centenary of its revolution? Behind the clichés of the Aztec god Quetzalcóatl, the Virgin of Guadalupe, and revolutionaries in sombreros, you can discover, over three months, a rich and complex nation, constantly reinventing its Mexicanness. Could Mexico, shaped over two centuries by the creative explosion of an incredible cross-fertilisation, be the archetype of the nation of the future? Find out at five exhibitions and a fascinating multidisciplinary festival.
Frida Kahlo y su mundo
The ultimate Mexican (self-)portrait, Frida Kahlos disconcerting gaze stares out from the Museo Dolores Olmedo collection, the worlds largest (private) collection of her work. 19 paintings, an etching, six drawings, and a number of photographs bear witness to her brilliant contribution to the symbolist and surrealist movements. And to her life, a hard one from the outset.
A tragic bus accident at just 17 led to a series of operations throughout her life, at a time when medicine was just feeling its way. Several miscarriages and a turbulent married life with Diego Rivera, the great painter of the Revolution, contributed to her works power and extraordinary beauty. Meet the real Frida, with her lust and struggle for life.
Imágenes del mexicano
The festivals major exhibition, Imágenes del mexicano, sums up the history of Mexico and its quest for identity in 150 portraits. We see the pre-Columbian period, colonialism, independence, and our own day through the eyes of Mexican and foreign artists. Portraits of unknown and famous Mexicans, images of ethnic minorities, and satirical works illustrate the heritage and aspirations of an everchanging nation.
Paintings by Hermenegildo Bustos, Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, and Frida Kahlo; films by Sergej Eisenstein; and photographs by Tina Modotti not just images, but Mexico itself!
25 Contemporary Photographers
Based in an old colonial tobacco factory, the Centro de la Imagen de México constantly explores the image. In Brussels it presents an original selection of contemporary Mexican photographs, presenting the variety and complexity of life in Mexico today in images grouped around the themes of space, knowledge, death, and dreams.
There is more to modernist architecture in Mexico than just the work of Luis Barragán, its most renowned representative. The detailed plans and impressive enlarged photographs in this exhibition offer a broad overview of architectural production in post-war Mexico . In addition, a unique series of documentary films and contemporary documents helps to flesh out this fascination evocation of the refined lines and raw functionalism of Mexican modernism.
El Horizonte del topo | The Moles Horizon
This contemporary art exhibition uses amnesia as an antidote to the ideological epic of official Mexico . Light and shade: works by Miguel Monroy, Edgardo Aragón, Daniel Guzmán, Jorge Satorre, Ilán Lieberman, Teresa Margolles, Yoshua Okón, Sergio de la Torre, and Francis Alÿs.
The performing arts are alive and well in Mexico ! The festival includes concerts of baroque and traditional music, as well as some moving poetry. Meet Jorge Volpi and Paco Ignacio Taibo II, two worthy successors to Carlos Fuentes.
Its sombrero time for all the family on 21 March, with the Fiesta en el Palacio. In April you can see a selection of films, in the presence of the directors. At the end of April, its time for some theatre, with two classics El Automovil Gris and El Gallo directed by Claudio Valdés Kuri, the famous director.
And how about a little masked wrestling lucha libre to finish up?