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Foto: bowers.org
Foto: bowers.org

Another auction recovers the legacy of Latino art, this time of Mexican Muralism

In 1972 the documentary Walls of Fire won the Golden Globe for Best Documentary. The award will be on auction. 

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Jose Clemente Orozco, Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros are known in Mexican art history as "los tres grandes" (the three greats). 

They were the three greats because they lived the artistic avant-garde of 1920 and knew how to choose their own path -the murals- which was nourished by the innovations in the change of technique to draw, understand color and compose, while drinking from the traditions of the Renaissance to talk about the interests of the working class in such a convulsive moment of history as the first half of the 20th century.

And they did this time and again in works in Mexico and the United States of frankly colossal proportions.

They were intimate with the great painters of the century, Picasso and Jacson Pollock among them, the unbridled love of the great Mexican painter Frida Khalo for Diego Rivera went down in history and they have been a constant object of reflection ever since.

José Clemente Orozco -the eldest of the three- died in 1949, Diego Rivera in 1957 and David Alfaro Siqueiros -the youngest- followed in 1974.

In 1971 the documentary Walls of Fire about the work of the three of them was released. It was directed by Herbert Kline and Edmund Penney and narrated by Ricardo Montalbán -who, without exaggeration, is perhaps the Mexican actor with the most appearances in American cinema so far.

By the time the documentary was made, Siqueiros was the only one of the big three still alive and was interviewed. According to a commentary in the New York Times, when Channel 13 played it again, back in 1983, his comments were objective and with perspective.

In that NY Times review John J. O'Connor says that the documentary has some rhythm problems, but that the samples of the murals of Rivera, Siqueiros and Orozco were wonderful and, in any case, Walls of Fire won the Golden Globe for Best Documentary in 1972 and was nominated for an Oscar for Best Documentary in 1973.

The Goldel Globe statuette is still preserved, it is part of the history of cinema and a trace of how cinema has seen the history of Latin American art.

It is currently in the custody of the Nate D. Sanders auction house, which will open its bidding to the public on June 25, starting at US$7,500.

In this link it is possible to access the official site of the auction.

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