The late María Izquierdo, a painter of Frida Kahlo vintage but much less known, is the focus of a small but fascinating show at the University of Guadalajara’s graceful Museo de las Artes in midtown Guadalajara.
Born in a town in the northern fringes of Jalisco, married off at the age of 14 and with three children by the age of 17, Izquierdo somehow managed to become a serious painter after moving to Mexico City in 1920, where she was caught up in post-revolution artistic fervor along with stellar artists such as Diego Rivera, José Clemente Orozco, David Alfaro Siquerios and Rufino Tamayo.
Izquierdo even shared a studio with Tamayo and is said to have become romantically linked with him. With Tamayo and other luminaries, she participated in the paradigm shift which saw European styles cast aside in favor of more authentic Mexican ones.
Nevertheless, similarities between her subjects and style and those of contemporary and earlier European artists such as Picasso, Dali, Rousseau and Gaugin are noticeable, including the fact that she painted on cloth and paper, unlike the Mexican muralists who of course painted walls.