Mérida, Carlos (1891–1984)

views updated

Mérida, Carlos (1891–1984)

Carlos Mérida (b. 2 December 1891; d. 22 December 1984), artist. Although born in Guatemala, Mérida is most often associated with the modern art movement in Mexico. In 1910 he traveled to Paris to study with Kees van Dongen (1877–1968) and Hermen Anglada-Camarasa (1873–1959), becoming closely associated with Pablo Picasso and Amadeo Modigliani. In 1914, Mérida returned to Guatemala to begin experimenting with folkloric themes in his painting. He exhibited his work in the National Academy of Fine Arts in Mexico in 1920, and his uniquely Latin American themes made him one of the pioneers of the Mexican artistic revolution.

The mural renaissance in Mexico in the 1920s greatly influenced his work. He was commissioned in 1921 to do two murals in the Ministry of Education in Mexico City. After a New York exhibition, Mérida again traveled to Europe, where he exhibited his work in Paris (1927). He returned to Mexico in 1929 to continue his work with plastic painting, gradually developing the abstract and plastic-surrealist style for which he is best known. Among his better-known works are mosaic murals in the Benito Juárez housing development in Mexico City (1952) and in the Municipal Building in Guatemala City (1956).

See alsoArt: The Twentieth Century .


Jean Charlot, The Mexican Mural Renaissance, 1920–1925 (1979).

Carlos Mérida, Modern Mexican Artists (1968), pp. 105-113.

Carlos Mérida, Carlos Mérida (1990).

Additional Bibliography

Cardoza y Aragón, Luis, and Renato González Mello. La nube y el reloj: Pintura mexicana contemporánea. Mexico: Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Instituto de Investigaciones Estéticas: Landucci, 2003.

Lara Elizondo, Lupina. Referencias de Picasso en México: Ocho pintores (1900–1950): Angel Zárraga, Diego Rivera, Carlos Mérida, Manuel Rodríguez Lozano, Alfonso Michel, Rufino Tamayo, Francisco Gutiérrez, Federico Cantú. Mexico City: Qualitas Compañía de Seguros, 2005.

                                          Sara Fleming