Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Equipo Cronica - pop art against Franco

Guernica (1971)

preparing my class about authoritarian art, I stumbled upon this pretty interesting artistic group from the Spain of the 1960s, Equipo Cronica (active between 1964-1981, including Juan Antonio Toledo, Manolo Vald├ęs and Rafael Solbes) which used pop art to criticize the society. Inspired explicitly by Cezanne, Velasquez and Picasso (which they quote and reinterpret extensively) they alluded to the commercialism of the period in which they were creating. Namely, la "cultura de la evasion" as the mass culture phenomenon of the mid-60s in Franco's Spain came to be known; it encompassed everything from bull fights to football, bad literature and bad cinema. I chose to show their reinterpretation of Guernica by Picasso because it strikes me how pop-art inspired this piece is and how the symbolism of the first Guernica is even more striking.