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Mendez index Arturo García Bustos
biographical essay | chronology of professional life and times | TGP album


1910 -- start of Mexican Revolution

1921 -- Union of Painters (Sindicato de Pintores) founded

1924: Mexico City -- Nationalizing the Walls
"Easel art invites confinement. The mural, on the other hand, offers itself to the passing multitude. The people may be illiterate, but they are not blind; so Rivera, Orozco, and Siqueiros assault the walls of Mexico. They paint something new and different. On moist lime is born a truly national art, child of the Mexican revolution and of these days of births and funerals."
(from Century of the Wind, book III of Eduardo Galeano's Memory of Fire, 1986)
1926
-- struggle over separation of Church and State intensifies
-- Arturo García Bustos is born in central Mexico City, where he will continue to live while growing up

1928
-- founding of National Revolutionary Party (in time, this will become the PRI)
-- after the death of his mother, his aunt Teresita looks after him; encourages his interest in the arts

1937-1940
-- takes classes at Academy of San Carlos
-- as he returns home from school, he often observes Diego Rivera and José Clemente Orozco painting murals
-- studies the work of Michaelangelo in the Biblioteca del Congreso de la Unión

1938 -- Taller de Gráfica Popular (Popular [people's] Graphic Workshop) founded

1942
-- official 'end' of Mexican Revolution; arguably, the revolution continues, its goals for social and economic justice not yet fully realized

1943
-- the League of Writers and Artists [Liga de Escritores y Artistas Revolucionarios (LEAR)] founded
-- García Bustos enrolls at Escuela de Pintura y Escultura de la Esmeralda (Esmeralda School of Painting and Sculpture)
-- classes with Frida Kahlo begin; García Bustos becomes one of "Los Fridos" (Kahlo's closest students)
-- paints his first murals under the direction of Frida Kahlo

1945
-- end of World War II; beginning of Cold War
-- Young Revolutionary Artists founded
-- García Bustos works on the magazine titled 1945, founded by David Alfaro Siquieros

1947-48
-- García Bustos joins Taller de Gráfica Popular (TGP)

1949-1950
-- the Communist Party of Mexico commissions García Bustos and his wife, the artist Rina Lazo, to paint a mural in a new school, in Temixco, Morelos

1951
-- first trip to Europe; visits international youth festival held in East Berlin; takes other trips to Italy and France to visit fine art museums, study works from the Italian Renaissance and French Impressionist/post-Impressionist Period

1952-54
-- García Bustos and his wife are invited by Luis Cardoza y Aragón to create and teach art in Guatemala; in 1954, he will witness, along with Che Guevara, the military overthrow of the democratic Guatemalan government, carried out with the aid of the CIA and the encouragement of United States corporations, such as United Fruit

1954
-- return to Mexico City
-- begins work on a print series about the Guatemalan experiences

1957
-- with his wife, moves to Oaxaca, and both teach at La Escuela de Bellas Artes

1958
-- they return to Mexico City

1959
-- first visit to Cuba; exhibits and lectures there at the invitation of Che Guevara

1961
-- second trip to Cuba

1964
-- begins murals in Ethnographic Museum on subject of Oaxaca

1977
-- invited to become member of the Mexican Academy of Fine Arts

1978
-- paints murals for Governor's Palace, Oaxaca

1986
-- additional murals for Governor's Palace, Oaxaca, are commissioned and completed

1989
-- mural for the University Metro station about Mexico in the 21st Century

1999
-- mural for Glaxo Wellcome Laboratories

sources:

Abel Santiago: En Tinta Negra y en Tinta Roja; Arturo García Bustos -- Vida y Obra. Edición de la Fundación Todos por el Istmo, A. C., 2000. In Spanish, translated here by Mariateresa Alvarez-Sánchez.

Anita Brenner (text) with historic photographs assembled by George R. Leighton: The Wind That Swept Mexico: the history of the Mexican Revolution 1910-1942, New York: Harper and Brothers Publishers, 1943 (third edition). This book is currently available in a trade paperback re-edition (1971) from the University of Texas Press.

Eduardo Galeano, Century of the Wind Book III of the trilogy, Memory of Fire, 1986. First American Edition, translated by Cedric Belfrage, New York: Pantheon Books, 1988.