READING PAINTINGS: THE INSCRIPTIONS IN THE PAINTED IN MEXICO, 1700-1790: PINXIT MEXICI EXHIBITION ANALYZED THROUGH THE LENS OF MIECZYSŁAW WALLIS
AuthorHormel, Ana Lucia
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe acclaimed 2017-2018 Painted in Mexico, 1700-1790: Pinxit Mexici Exhibition and its corresponding catalogue reintroduced the world to the paintings of eighteenth-century Mexico. Presented alongside each other, the over one hundred paintings in the collection are frequently distinguished by one element: text. This paper takes into account this unique element and examines the applicability of the typology outlined by art historian Mieczsław Wallis in “Inscriptions in Paintings,” a seminal article on the topic of painting inscriptions. Wallis defines four categories of painting inscription based on function: identification, statement, invocation, and artist statement. Analysis of the 95 inscribed paintings in the catalogue reveals that over 52% of inscriptions functioned as forms of identification, over 8% functioned as statements, over 2% functioned as invocations, and over 35% functioned as artist statements. Three conclusions can be drawn from this research: first, Wallis’ typology generally applies; second, the outliers which the typology struggles to categorize indicate refinements can be made; and third, a fifth category could be added to class didactic statements.
Degree ProgramHonors College