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Art and Architecture in Mexico (World of Art)

James Oles


A survey of the full breadth and complexity of Mexican art history, ranging widely across genres and offering new interpretations of painting, sculpture, architecture, prints and photographs


This new interpretive history of Mexican art and architecture from the Spanish Conquest to the early decades of the twenty-first century is the most comprehensive introduction to the subject in fifty years.

The author ranges widely across media and genres, offering new readings of paintings, murals, sculptures, buildings, prints and photographs. He interprets major works by such famous artists as Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, but also discusses less familiar figures who were equally important in the construction of national identity.

The story of Mexican art is set in its rich historical context by the book’s treatment of political and social change. The author draws on recent scholarship to examine crucial issues of race, class and gender, including an exploration of the work of indigenous artists during the colonial period, and of women artists in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Throughout, Oles shows how artists in Mexico participated in local and international developments, and highlights the important role played by Mexicans in the art world of the last five centuries.

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'A sweeping panorama of five rich and diverse centuries of Mexican art and architecture. The best and most up-to-date survey of its kind'
Alan Knight, Oxford University

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Paperback

Size: 21.0 x 15.0 cm

Extent: 432 pp

Illustrations: 275

Publication date: 29 July 2013

ISBN: 9780500204061

Contents List

Introduction • Chapter 1: Conquest and Negotiation 1520–1600 • Chapter 2: Art for the New Cities 1550–1700 • Chapter 3: Baroque Splendor under the Bourbons 1700–1810 • Chapter 4: From Neoclassicism to Romanticism 1750–1850 • Chapter 5: National Identity: History, Landscape, Citizens 1840–80 • Chapter 6: From the Porfiriato to the Revolution 1880–1920 • Chapter 7: From Revolution to Renaissance 1920–34 • Chapter 8: Political and Personal Dreams 1934–46 • Chapter 9: Construction and Rebellion 1946–72 • Chapter 10: From the Olympics to Neo-Mexicanism 1968–94 • Chapter 11: Contemporary Art

About the Author

James Oles is Senior Lecturer in Art at Wellesley College, Massachusetts, and adjunct curator of Latin American art at the college’s Davis Museum and Cultural Center.