Lincoln Building 1135
7 pm "Orozco's Exhibition History," a lecture by Dafne Cruz Porchini, Postdoctoral Fellow, El Colegio de México, Mexico City followed by a reception in front of Orozco's Prometheus mural in Frary Dining Hall, Pomona College
El Colegio de México Postdoctoral Fellow Dafne Cruz Porchini will give the second "Orozco in Focus" lecture, focusing on the artist's works on paper and canvas, and his substantial exhibition history in the United States and Mexico. Cruz was previously curator at the Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, and from 2007 to 2011 she was the deputy director of the Museo Nacional de Arte, Mexico City. Her main research interests include the history of modern exhibitions and transcultural artistic exchanges. Cruz's most recent publication is a critical catalogue of twentieth-century modern Mexican painting, Catálogo comentado de pintura del siglo XX (Museo Nacional de Arte-Instituto de Investigaciones Estéticas, 2013), for which she served as the academic coordinator. She is currently organizing the exhibition "Mexican Modernisms," which will open at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in fall 2016.
About Orozco in Focus
The Pomona College Museum of Art presents Orozco in Focus, a series of lectures by prominent national and international scholars examining the artistic, social and political significance of José Clemente Orozco’s work. The inaugural lecture, “Revising Orozco," was presented by Alejandro Anreus, Associate Professor of Art History and Latin American Studies, William Patterson University.
Dartmouth College professor Mary Coffey will give the third “Orozco in Focus” lecture, exploring Orozco’s relationship to history, myth, and the public. Coffey is a specialist in the history of modern Mexican visual culture, with an emphasis on Mexican muralism and the politics of exhibition. Coffey’s book, How a Revolutionary Art Became Official Culture: Murals, Museums, and the Mexican State received the Charles Rufus Morey Prize from the College Art Association for a distinguished book published in Art History in 2012.
The Orozco in Focus series is presented in conjunction with the Museum’s research and planning for the 2017 exhibition, Prometheus 1930/2017, supported by a grant from the Getty Foundation as part of Pacific Standard Time LA/LA. Orozco in Focus is supported in part by the Janet Inskeep Benton ’79 Fund for Museum Programming and presented in collaboration with Pomona College faculty and departmental partners.
About Prometheus 1930/2017
José Clemente Orozco was one of the three great Mexican muralists, along with Diego Rivera and David Alfaro Siqueiros. Pomona College is home to Orozco’s Prometheus mural, created in 1930 and recognized as one of the artist’s masterpieces. Prometheus is the first mural painted in the U.S. by one of Los Tres Grandes of Mexican muralism and a work that Jackson Pollock declared the greatest contemporary painting in North America. Orozco’s revolutionary work of art portrays Prometheus in the act of bringing fire to humanity.
For the Prometheus 1930/2017 project, the research team—Rebecca McGrew, Pomona College Museum of Art senior curator; Terri Geis, Pomona College Museum of Art curator of academic programs; Mary Coffey, Dartmouth College professor of art history; and Daniel Garza Usabiaga, chief curator at el Museo Universitario del Chopo, in Mexico City—will explore the politics of Orozco's mural and its public mode of communication of social and political positions. Orozco’s vision of Prometheus as an allegory for art that attempts to reach a wider audience—bringing knowledge and enlightenment to the masses—highlights his efforts to transform society.
The exhibition and accompanying publication will examine where and how these traditions of communicative visual strategies married to political dialogue resonate with contemporary artists from Mexico who utilize strategies of activist art, public intervention, social practice, and engaged historical or archival research to connect with a broader public and advance or critique social and political causes.
Prometheus 1930/2017 is scheduled to open at Pomona College in September 2017.