Contemporáneos, Los

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Contemporáneos, Los

Los Contemporáneos, a group of Mexican artists and writers in the 1920s who opposed the dogmatic character of the Escuela Mexicana (Mexican School) and disseminated the ideas of the European avant garde. Among its most important members were the writers Xavier Villaurrutía, Salvador Novo, Jaime Torres Bodet, and the artist and critic Agustín Lazo. Originally gathered around Antonieta Rivas Mercado and the first experimental theater in Mexico, Teatro Ulises, these writers and artists went on to form the group called Los Contemporáneos in 1927. They founded an important journal devoted to art and literature titled Contemporáneos (1928–1931). Often attacked by the members of the Escuela Mexicana for being overly concerned with European modernism, Los Contemporáneos nevertheless were important promoters of a number of lesser-known Mexican artists, including Abraham Angel, Manuel Rodríguez Lozano, Carlos Mérida, and Julio Castellanos. In 1935 they organized an exhibition of the work of Rufino Tamayo at the Galería de Arte Mexicano. Although Los Contemporáneos were condemned for not being fervent nationalists, they wrote extensively about Mexican art and literature.

See alsoLiterature: Spanish America .


Olivier Debroise, Figuras en el trópico, plástica mexicana 1920–1940 (1984), esp. p. 141.

Jorge Alberto Manrique, "Rompimiento y rompimientos en el arte mexicano," in Museo de Arte Alvar y Carmen T. de Carrillo Gil, Ruptura 1952–1965 (1988), pp. 25-42, and "Otras caras del arte mexicano," in Museo Nacional de Arte de Mexico, Modernidad y modernización en el arte mexicano 1920–1960 (1991), pp. 131-143.

Additional Bibliography

Oropesa, Salvador A. The Contemporáneos Group: Rewriting Mexico in the Thirties and Forties. Austin: University of Texas Press, 2003.

Vento, Arnold C. La generación Hijo pródigo: Renovación y modernidad. Lanham, MD: University Press of America, 1996.

                                            Ilona Katzew