Thursday, February 9, 2012

Art: Capturing Diego Rivera's Colossal Talent

Growing up Mexican I have always been very familiar with and immensely reverential towards the art of the great muralists of Mexico- Diego Rivera, David Alfaro Siqueiros, Jose Clemente Orozco.  I was, thus, very excited to recently visit MoMa's current exhibit, Diego Rivera: Murals for the Museum of Modern Art, which runs through May 14th.  The exhibit features pieces from Rivera's 1931 exhibition at MoMa, and though not extensive, the story that unfolds of Rivera, revolution, industrialization, and New York in 20's and 30's is truly transporting. Standing in front of the emotive Rivera frescoes is absolutely breathtaking.
After letting each piece fully soak in, I felt the need to make the experience last and headed to the gift shop.  Surprisingly, I ended up falling in love with a book not directly related to the murals presented, but rather a compilation of Rivera's many political cartoons and leftist propaganda drawings entitled, "Diego Rivera: Great Illustrator" (Biblioteca de Ilustradores Mexicanos.)  While his murals are clearly worthy of their prominence, this book highlights Rivera's extraordinary and prolific body of illustration beautifully.  The book was too expensive to buy in the design shop, but I did find it at for a much more decent price and decided it will be my next art book purchase as soon as I have the chance.
Still, if bringing Rivera's murals home is what you are really after, I would save up and spring for the mother of all Rivera books, Diego Rivera: The Complete Murals.  Like all Taschen books, it truly captures the magic of Rivera's murals through oversized, fold-out pages.  You're looking at a much higher price-tag, but it's an exhaustive tome that will never cease to wow you, and is guaranteed to always have a home in any art aficionado's collection.  Of course, if you have the chance, don't miss out on the real thing.  I highly recommend visiting the exhibit itself as it is truly an experience never to be forgotten!

1 comment:

  1. If you are in NY or planning to be there, Rivera's exhibit is a must. I was lucky to see it!