This is a remarkable opportunity to work with major collections at the MFAH and the ICAA (see post from 12/15/17 about the ICAA).
“Students will have the opportunity to participate in year-long, paid internships with the ICAA. This has been a continuous feature of the UH graduate program in art history since 2009, when the University placed its first intern in the MFAH’s prestigious research center for Latin American and Latino art. With the signing of the memorandum, UH students will now benefit from access to previously restricted resources from the Latin American and Latino art collections and digital archival holdings of the MFAH. Moreover, UH faculty and MFAH staff will use their ongoing innovations in object-based learning for continued collaboration in the burgeoning area. The hope is that this partnership will serve as a model for other museums and research universities across the country.”
[*Genome: 1. the haploid set of chromosomes in a gamete or microorganism, or in each cell of a multicelluar organism. 2. the complete set of genes or genetic material present in a cell or organism.]
Artsy’s Art Genome: Project:
“The Art Genome Project is the classification system and technological framework that powers Artsy. It maps the characteristics (we call them “genes”) that connect artists, artworks, architecture, and design objects across history. There are currently over 1,000 characteristics in The Art Genome Project, including art historical movements, subject matter, and formal qualities.”
Dig into the International Center for the Arts of the Americas (ICAA) This rich archive of primary source documents related to all aspects of Latin American and Latino Art is an essential research source. You may also access a wide range of publications based on the materials in the collection. The archive is hosted by theMuseum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH). Registration for an account is free. Check it out!
Many of the documents are in Spanish (also some in Portuguese, French, etc.). If you are not a Spanish-reader: dig in anyhow and look at the primary source materials associated with artists in whom you are interested — many sources are illustrated. Be an intrepid researcher! You may find images here that are not available elsewhere. And, many of the ICAA’s publications are in English. Search these secondary sources. You’ll see smart scholarship at work.
The 2017 exhibition Leo Matiz: The Muralist of the Lens. Siquerios in Perspective in Mexico City at the Palacio de Bellas Artes highlights the relationship between muralist David Alfaro Siqueiros and photographer Leo Matiz. Siqueiros was especially sensitive to the relationship between murals and photography. He not only used photos as source material and compositional models but was also acutely aware of how it could shape space and viewer/object relationships. You can find out more about Siqueiros’s experimentation with photography in the catalogue for the 2010 exhibition, Siqueiros, Landscape Painter, Mexico: Editorial RM, 2010. You can read the text in English or Spanish. Finally, read the work of art historian, Jennifer Jolly. She analyzes the impact of photography (as well as film) on Siqueiros’s very dense “narrative” and visually overwhelming structure in the mural for the Electrician’s Syndicate Building in Mexico City. Take a look at her University of Ithaca CV with a list of publications on this mural.
Siqueiros (left) and Matiz
(Photo credit: Art Nexos blog; Weekly News, August 7 to August 13, 2017)