CITYLIFE / what's on

Mexican masterpieces
(Beijing Weekend)
Updated: 2006-06-29 10:53

A grand exhibition featuring Mexican contemporary paintings, ceramics and architecture kicked off on June 27 at the National Art Museum of China.

Paintings cover styles ranging from realism to expressionism, from abstractionism to experimentalism. The 20th century Mexican painting is said to be best represented by Mural Movement. Throughout the 1920s, muralists devoted themselves to producing a large number of significant works in public places, which brought Mexican art to the forefront of the world art arena, and influenced artists worldwide. They drew inspirations from the European Cubism, Surrealism and ancient Indian painting styles, and elaborated on realistic themes of ordinary people's lives, national historic scenes and patriotism. Breaking away from canvas and frame, they wielded brushes on public places with Latin gusto, in hope to bring art closer to more people.

Leading the movement were three masters, with Diego Rivera developing his ideas with primitive simplicity, mysterious and solid colours, Jose Clemente Orozco depicting the harsh truth in sceptical yet sympathetic ways, and David Alfaro Siqueiros incorporating new materials and techniques in his expressionist works.

The Mexican modern architecture exhibition has photographs of the symbolic architecture constructed during the 20th century.

In the ceramics show, 22 contemporary artists blend their traditional folk art with modern practice and creativity, showing their rich experience and imagination. Like traditional Chinese ceramics, they adore blue and white as main colours. Among the exhibits, one is detailed with regular patterns and dense colours like batik cloth; one is themed on doves and clouds with spiralling images; and one is shaped as a deformed bottle decorated with petals and leaves.

The exhibition is organized by the Mexican Embassy and the museum. The painting show will last until August 21. Ceramics and architecture will end on July 27.

Location: National Art Museum of China, 1 Wusi Dajie, Dongcheng District
Opening hours: 9 am-5 pm
Tel: 010-64017076