Friday, October 9, 2009

DIA DE LOS MUERTOS: Common Ground.

Expressions Graphics and Arceo Press invite you the
public viewing of the print portfolio
“DIA DE LOS MUERTOS: Common Ground
Opening: Saturday, October 17, 2009 from 2 - 4 pm
at Expressions Graphics Gallery
Exhibition ends: November 2nd

Flyer Exhibition at Expressions Graphics

I wanted to organize an international collaboration on the theme of death for a while. Since this is such a universal topic, not only would everyone have something to say about it but, the way in which each artist would tell it, and the meaning and symbols each artist could use would be vastly different and rich. This was the year when I finally asked a group of friends if they would be interested. The response was a robust yes! What is the deadline and what are the parameters? Soon we were all at work drawing and sketching ideas for our prints.

This portfolio includes 20 artists from United States, Mexico, France, Canada and Spain. The prints included were done by artists with distinct experiences and cultural traditions. There is great diversity of life experiences and perspectives towards death which are reflected in this suite of prints. For example, there are serigraphs done by artists from Mexico living in Chicago and in Seville, Spain; a linocut done by a Japanese artist living in Toronto, Canada; linocut print by an English artist living in Paris; and other prints done by artists living in their respective or adopted countries.

This unique collaboration offers a window of opportunity to look into the diverse perceptions of death artists bring to this graphic project. Through these prints some artists interpret death in a spiritual and a way of recalling the deceased relatives with the recreation of a traditional altar/ofrenda. In other cases artists make use of playful skeletons, in the Jose Guadalupe Posada style, to pock fun at life, sexual encounters, to criticize political leaders and drunkenness. Yet others make use of more ritual-like and profound cultural symbols to allude to the essence; the natural cycle of life and death.

René Hugo Arceo
Project Director/Printmaker
Arceo Press, Chicago