Monday, November 2, 2009

Jose Guadalupe Posada

This famous Posada print was inserted as a postcard in The Mexican Day of the Dead by Chloe Sayer, Shambala Books, 1994. Sayer also wrote The Skeleton at the Feast and The Arts and Crafts of Mexico. She lectures on Mexico for British art schools and museums, and is a Fellow of the Royal Antrhopological Institute.

To an outsider, the Day of the Dead celebrations "might seem macabre, but in Mexico death is considered to be a part of life... portrayed with affection and humour."

I first read about Guadalupe Posada in Joseph Mitchell's Up in the Old Hotel. Mitchell, a longtime writer for The New Yorker, saw the prints in Frida Kahlo's hotel suite, and was taken with their undercurrent of humor. Originals are hard to find. Guadalupe Posada's work was cranked out like a daily bulletin, and posted around Mexican cities during the late 19th--early 20th centuries.

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