Sunday, March 21, 2010

Absolute Power corrupts Absolutely

Government is and will always be a touchy subject. Are you a democrat or a republican- or are you liberal? Government and the constant promise to ensure a better future is always the campaign. The reading based on Philip Guston and his spoofs on Richard Nixon made me think about government problems and solutions that have resulted from artistic and societal need for change.
This mural was painted by David Alfaro Siqueiros, a Mexican painter. The Mexican Revolution was the result of frustration under the dictatorship of Porfirio Diaz and the revolution was inevitable. While the bourgeoisie became wealthy, the rural societies and working classes were forced to make due with the severe exploitation due to the "promise" of a more industrial Mexico.
The image above shows Diaz sitting, along with his military advisor to the right, and his advisor to the left. The crowd surrounding him seems to be enjoying themselves- the women dancing while wearing extremely extravagant hats. The gentlemen in the back seem to be awaiting Diaz's next decision or next plan of change. However the crowd of men that engulf him seem to be persuading him, offering ideas and influence.
The revolutionary soldiers at the bottom represent Mexican blue- collar workers, those who had been taken advantage of and those who refused to be run by a selfish dictator. The energy between the two images is completely different. The first seems carefree- through Diaz is conversing with his party, the movement of the dancing women and even the rounded crowded up top appears to move and allow the viewer's eye to move throughout the piece. The crowded soldiers on the other hand seem to be so static in place, that the viewer cannot help but be engulfed in the seriousness throughout all of the soldiers faces. As if they are on a mission to make a change!

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