Cody Ferrantino | October 11, 2014
When history professors Karen Graubart and Jaime Pensado saw what the Art Institute of Chicago was showing this season, they planned a road trip and invited their students to come along.
As a result, more than two dozen undergraduates—along with the two professors and their TAs—headed to downtown Chicago in September to see “What May Come: the Taller de Grafica Popular and the Mexican Political Print,” an exhibit of works from what the Art Institute describes as the “most influential and enduring printmaking collective” of the early twentieth century.
A state-sponsored studio in Mexico City, the Taller de Grafica Popular (TGP) produced leftist prints that advanced the government’s antifascist rhetoric during the Second World War. Founded by Leopoldo Mendez, Luis Arenal, and Pablo O’Higgins in 1937, the TGP produced thousands of works through the 1950s by dozens of Mexican and international artists.
The exhibit features more than a hundred pieces from the Art Institute’s vast TGP collection. It is a draw in its own right, but was of particular interest to the first-years students enrolled in Graubart’s University Seminar as well as upper-level students in Pensado’s course, Art and Revolution in Latin America.