Sunday, April 9, 2017

What else did they do?

I am building resources for a workbook I am putting together. A collection of information on art moments and individual artists and the like. I have about 80 artists I am collecting information on. Many of them are well known such as da Vinci or Titian; some lesser known Basawan and Carrie Mae Weems. I have made many rather dismal discoveries during my efforts. The latest of which is this: I have been doing quick google work searching for the birth-date of each artist and looking up or fact checking which art moments that artist is primarily known to be a part of. Of course many of the artists belong to multiple movements, or do not fit the movements of their time. The information is always easy to come by though. The first or second google result, possibly the third. Da Vinci, Tintoretto, Gauguin, Picasso, Pissarro, Manet... It's as easy to find their related art movement as it is to find their birth-date. But when I got to Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera respectively I ran into the same problem for both. They were not titled post-impressionist painters or cubist painters. They were Mexican painters. Same issue for both on multiple websites.

Though their bodies of work would indicate that they were both post-impressionists (or cubist) painters they are Mexican painters. Is this a huge outrage? No. They ARE Mexican painters and both bodies of work were very important to their time and their country. It is a tiny symptom of the larger problem of unequal treatment. Equal treatment is of course, impossible, however, should be treated carefully, especially if you have one of the top three google search results.

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