La Biblioteca

Lecture


“Art History: Portrait Painting”
Mon, Feb 23, 5pm
Sala Quetzal
La Biblioteca
Reloj 50A
Donation 60 pesos
Art History: Portrait Painting
By Jerry DeSchepper
When we think of portraiture, what comes to mind is an image of a person (or persons) in which the face is the main theme. Typically the representation will be of the sitter’s head and shoulders or will sometimes be half-length or full-body. In most cases, the picture is meant to portray the character or unique attributes of its subject. Usually the person portrayed is turned three-quarters, rather than in a straight head-on position or profile, and typically the background space is minimized. In other words, there seem to be “rules” for the construction of what we recognize as a portrait. How did this come to be? And why should it have become these rules and not some others? These questions are worth asking because viewing a portrait is at heart an imaginative engagement with another human being — one separate and different from ourselves — and these pictorial conventions can both direct and limit our comprehension.
In this talk we will examine some examples of portrait painting from different historical eras and cultures, in order to see what may be learned from these “face-to-face” encounters. Jerry DeSchepper is a retired Professor of Art from the University of Rhode Island. He has spoken previously at La Biblioteca on abstraction and mixed media in Modern Art.

Lecture
History of the Dining Table Lecture Series
History of Coffee, Tea, and Cacao
Fri, Feb 27, 3pm
Sala Quetzal
La Biblioteca
Reloj 50A
Donation 60 pesos
History of Coffee, Tea, and Cacao
By Eva Eliscu
The arrival of coffee, tea, and cacao to Europe during the 17th century caused many changes in the lives of the Europeans and the people of the British Colonies. The impact of the introduction of coffee and tea was particularly noticeable because the most common beverage at this time, even at breakfast, was weak ale and wine. In the crowded cities these beverages were safer to drink than water. Those who drank coffee and tea instead of ale and wine began their day alert and stimulated rather than relaxed and inebriated. The quality of their work improved. Western Europe began to emerge from an alcoholic haze that lasted for centuries. When the first commercial cargo of cacao beans arrived in Spain in 1585, hot chocolate quickly became part of the Spanish way of life among society’s elite. France was next to fall under the chocolate spell.

Lecture
Collage and Assemblage, Past and Present
The Art of Joan Hall
Thu, Feb 26, 1:30pm
Sala Quetzal
La Biblioteca
Reloj 50A
60 pesos
Collage, Assemblage, and Ecology
By Joan Hall
I will be presenting a lecture and slide show on collage and assemblage from 12th century Japan to contemporary American photo illustration. Included in Part 1 are works by Picasso, Matisse, Rauschenberg, and numerous other artists. You will see how everyday materials are recycled into art, including spare tires, money, and even blood. The use of collage in illustration has become a familiar sight. You will learn how artists cope with some of their hilarious and frustrating experiences in the workplace. Part 2 consists of my own artwork. This program is both entertaining and educational.
The word collage stems from the French word colle, meaning glue. Assemblage is three-dimensional collage. I have been working in both mediums for 40 years, both as a fine artist and as a freelance illustrator. Collage has rapidly gained popularity as an art form in the United States. I believe that there are sociological reasons for this. We live in a fast food mentality! Everyone is in a hurry, and the medium of collage conveys a feeling of spontaneity. With the advent of the computer and the Internet, our world has become fragmented. This is reflected in the bits and pieces that make up a collage or assemblage.
I am having an exhibition of a series of collages titled “Parroquian Dreams,” at Intersección in the Fábrica la Aurora, until March 4.

Lecture
Ghosts in the Stone
Thu, Feb 26, 4pm
Sala Quetzal
La Biblioteca
Reloj 50A
100 pesos
Ghosts in the Stone
By Fraser Bannerman
How can the ordinary observation of objects become artistic appreciation? By training our eyes. “Ghosts in the Stone” shows how the perception of art and the art of perception are readily accessible, for it’s how we look that inspires artistic vision. Looking for ghosts is sometimes triggered and sometimes tripped. The triggered experience is a creative gateway into imagination, familiar to artists when they describe looking inside an object. The tripping effect occurs more by accident when seeing beyond structure and lines to discover a previously unseen image. As Leonard Cohen in his song “Anthem” proclaims, “There is a crack, a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.”
Ghost images exist in many forms of everyday life, from wood grain, clouds, stone, weathered walls to dirt marks on the floors of our homes. It is so common that it barely seems worth a discussion, let alone participating in a fascinating presentation, but stay tuned. I have found that the discovery of ghost images is a constant inspiration for my own art and engenders a lifetime of appreciation in the world of art.
Herman Hesse’s character Demian describes the process of looking beyond the ordinary and discovering magic. Mystics refer to a transformative moment where something energetic emanates from nature’s basic elements like stone, wood, sky, and water. Mythological characters dance in the sky in the traditions of native people. The tree people of Celtic lore can only be found by those who see into the very heart of the forest. “Ghosts in the Stone” probes the experience of seeing through observation, insight, imagination, consciousness, and artistic vision.
How a hidden face takes on the essence of a ghost will be demonstrated throughout the presentation by way of photographs, cultural icons, native people’s traditions, and Celtic mythology as well as works from both local and classical artists. This presentation invites audience participation through questions, shared experiences, and exercises, all of which contribute to a new appreciation of everyday experience and an artistic adventure.
Fraser Bannerman, artist of Mazatlán, Sinaloa, Mexican and Muskoka, Ontario Canada.

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