Title: Untitled, from the portfolio Chile 11 Septembre—11 Latino- Americains
Color screenprint on machine-made paper
Edition of 175
Dimensions: Image: 25 1/2 x 19 5/8 inches (64.8 x 49.9 cm)
Overall/Frame: 25 1/2 x 19 5/8 x 1 inches (64.8 x 49.9 x 2.5 cm)
Gift of David Klasfeld and Hila Richardson
Object Number: 84.140.008
When, on September 11, 1973, military forces led by General Augusto Pinochet staged a US–backed coup d’état and deposed Salvador Allende, the democratically elected socialist president of Chile, the international community’s response was instantaneous. In France, the Comité France-Amérique Latine mobilized eleven Latin American artists to produce an album of screenprints as both a gesture of solidarity and a vehicle to raise funds to support Chilean students studying in France who had lost their scholarships, as well as those who had been forced to flee Chile and seek refuge in France. The portfolio includes work by such heavyweights as Wifredo Lam, Roberto Matta, Jesús Rafael Soto, and Carlos Cruz-Diez, as well as lesser known artists from across the region.
The portfolio also includes an introductory statement by Jean Cassou, a writer, poet, and cultural preservationist who served as the first Director of the Musée National d’Art Moderne in Paris. Cassou decries the coup, strongly criticizing the unfettered capitalism that, he argues, drives the imperialist tendency of the United States to intervene in Latin American democracies. ("All for One and One for All: Portfolios from the Permanent Collection," co-curated by Andrea Inselmann and Sonja Gandert and presented at the Johnson Museum June 24-August 20, 2017)
In this dark, colorful print, three distinct figures stare directly at the viewer. Their bodies are not entirely clear, the blue figures truncated at the head while the red one appears to dissolve into abstraction. This assemblage of three incomplete monsters is stylistically typical for Lam, who throughout his career combined disparate figural fragments into original compositions. These elements drew equally from the Afro-Cuban religious traditions of his native country and the avant-garde movements of surrealism and cubism that he was steeped in during his time in Spain and France, where he lived for nearly twenty years before returning to Cuba in 1941. Lam, like many of his contemporaries, was staunchly political; this print, as well as that of Venezuelan artist Jesús Rafael Soto (also on view in this section), is part of a portfolio of screenprints by eleven Latin American artists published by the Comité France-Amérique Latine in a gesture of solidarity for the victims of Chilean President Augusto Pinochet’s 1973 coup d’état. ("Imprint/ In Print," curated by Nancy E. Green with assistance from Christian Waibel '17 and presented at the Johnson Museum August 8 - December 20, 2015)
NOTE: This electronic record is compiled from historic documentation which may not reflect the Johnson Museum's complete or current knowledge of the object. Review and refinement of such records is ongoing.