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Exhibition of Mexican Modern Painting Opens at Singapore Art Museum
Frida Kahlo, "Self-Portrait with Medallion", 1948. Oil/Masonite. 50 cm x 40 cm. Private Collection.

SINGAPORE.- The Singapore Art Museum and the Embassy of Mexico proudly presents "Camino a la Modernidad, The Path to Modernity: Mexican Modern Painting". The exhibition examines the myriad artistic languages that constitute the formation of Mexican modernism. Camino a la Modernidad, "The Path to Modernity: Mexican Modern Painting" is the largest Mexican art exhibition ever held in Singapore and Southeast Asia.

"Camino a la Modernidad, The Path to Modernity: Mexican Modern Painting" traces major developments in Mexican art from the 1900s to the 1950s, where Mexican society underwent tremendous changes in social and political spheres that impacted much of its artistic expression. The Mexican Revolution (1910) laid the foundation for a new artistic movement, Mexican Mural Renaissance, which attempted to bridge the class divide in the construction of a national identity and aesthetic, through bringing art to the masses in the form of highly accessible, outdoor public art murals. The exhibition features over 70 works from important Mexican public and private collections, including works by renowned mural artists Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, José Clemente Orozco, Roberto Montenegro, Rufino Tamayo, Maria Izquierdo and Frida Kahlo.

The exhibition is organized in three sections: Agents of Change, Charting New Territories and The Graphic Arts. Agents of Change highlight the aspect of artists being conscious of their roles as agents of social change, and many of them were aware of the need for art to be socially-conscious. The second section Charting New Territories shows how the artists attempt to break new ground in their art. We can see this in the exaltation of Mexican landscape as a hallmark of national identity, the development of industrial scenes as a new genre of Mexican landscape painting, as well as the exploration of abstract art by artists such as Germán Cueto, Carlos Mérida and Kishio Murata, as a means of crossing the boundaries of aesthetic definition. The Graphic Arts section presents the artists’ belief in the idea of art as a communicative tool to the masses, and many of the illustrations here attempt to highlight the issues of the working classes and farming communities.

Says Director, Singapore Art Museum, Mr. Tan Boon Hui, “"Camino a la Modernidad: The Path to Modernity: Mexican Modern Painting" is the largest Mexican Art Exhibition ever to be showcased in Singapore and Southeast Asia. The exhibition examines the myriad artistic languages that constitute the formation of Mexican modernism. Through the selection of the artworks in this exhibition, we see how different artists interpreted the notions of ‘modernity’ and ‘progress’, and quite significantly, their mixed results. The Singapore Art Museum is privileged to work with the National Institute of Fine Arts in Mexico and the Embassy of Mexico in realizing this magnificent exhibition.”

Says Mr. Antonio Villegas, Ambassador-Designated of Mexico, Embassy of Mexico, “In 2010, Mexico will be celebrating the 200th Anniversary of its Independence and 100th Anniversary of the Mexican revolution, "Camino a la Modernidad: The Path to Modernity: Mexican Modern Painting". This is an exhibition that portraits the long history of Mexico and the vastness of the Mexican culture and art. We, at the Mexican Embassy in Singapore are very proud to share this heritage with the people of Singapore. This is the first time that such a magnificent collection of Mexican art, 25 of the artworks are National and Cultural Heritage and it is inaugurated during the official visit of the President of Mexico., H.E. Mr. Felipe Calderon to Singapore. Mdm. Margarita Zavala, Mexico’s First Lady will be the Guest of Honor during the opening on Saturday, November 14th, 2009. The Embassy of Mexico hopes that this Exhibition could serve as an invitation to our friends in Singapore to visit Mexico to learn and experience our unique culture.”

"Camino a la Modernidad: The Path to Modernity: Mexican Modern Painting" is on show at the Singapore Art Museum from 15 November 2009 to 3 January 2010.

The Singapore Art Museum | The Path to Modernity | Diego Rivera | David Alfaro Siqueiros | José Clemente Orozco |

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November 16, 2009

Exhibition of Mexican Modern Painting Opens at Singapore Art Museum

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