In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, the Gallery at the Braid is showcasing five Jewish Latino artists: Arnold Belkin, Fanny Rabel, Gunther Gerzso, Mathias Goeritz and Pedro Friedeberg.
The artwork hails from the collection of Mixografia, a Los Angeles-based fine arts lithographer and publisher. Mixografia is known for its expansion of the realm of printmaking by incorporating dimensionality and relief into a traditionally two-dimensional medium. It is a third generation family business, originally named Taller de Grafica Mexicana, and founded by Luis and Lea Remba, Mexican-Jewish printmakers from Mexico City.
Working with several local artists, the Rembas developed a process that allows artists to print in relief while registering the artwork’s texture and fine surface detail. Their innovations required them to invent a new kind of paper and papermaking machinery. These artistic and mechanical inventions led to the creation of Mixographia and inspired the renaming of the studio. After being invited to organize an exhibition of Mixographia’s prints at UCLA, the Rembas opened an L.A. studio in the 80’s. Mixographia’s new techniques have redefined the category of “print” allowing artists greater conceptual possibilities, greater creative freedom and possibility.
Participating artists have major historical significance in Mexico and the United States. Belkin and Rabel were two of Mexico’s great muralists. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, Belkin immigrated to Mexico to study and be closer to the political public art of great Mexican artists such as Diego Rivera. He produced 28 major public murals and many easel works that reflected his commitment to showing humanity’s most controversial and sometimes painful experiences. Also a muralist, Rabel was born in Poland and moved to Mexico City in 1937 when WWII began. Her murals were often characterized by the display of anguish toward oppression and inherent catastrophe that accompanied the mega-growth of her new home.
Gunther Gerzso is Mexico’s most significant 20th Century Abstractionist. His body of work incorporates Cubism, Surrealism, references to pre-Columbian art and the varied landscapes of Mexico. Another Mexican emigrant, Mathias Goeritz was originally a German painter and sculptor. He emigrated to Spanish Morocco, then Mexico and became a professor of visual education and drawing in Guadalajara. He continued to sculpt, participate in and organize prestigious group exhibitions that made him a leading figure in the development of modern art in Mexico. Friedeberg came to Mexico to escape Mussolini. He is the inventor of several styles of architecture that reflect social problems and cloud formations. His architecture, he hoped, will make people laugh.