The Siqueiros mural: a treasure in San Miguel de Allende


Muralism is an artistic current of great social and historical importance in Mexico. After the conflict of the Mexican Revolution, national pictorial artists began to create large-format works in public spaces, whose themes revolved around national identity.

This massive exposure to art has its precursor in pre-Hispanic art, and its greatest modern exponents were Gerardo Murillo, known as “Dr. Atl”, as well as José Clemente Orozco, David Alfaro Siqueiros, Juan O’Gorman, and Diego Rivera.

The work, known internationally as “The Unfinished Mural of Siqueiros”, was made in the 1940s on the walls of the vault of an old 18th-century convent, in memory of General Ignacio Allende, one of the most energetic insurgents in Mexico.

From 1938 to 1948, the building was rented to found the University School of Fine Arts of San Miguel de Allende. Siqueiros gave master classes to students from the University—all of them ex-combatants of World War II—to paint a mural under his direction, however, the mural called <Life and Work of Generalissimo Don Ignacio Allende<, was interrupted due to disagreements with the director of the School, Alfredo Campanella.

The mural would cover the entire space of the vault: 550 square meters, considering walls, naves, and floors. Despite not being finished, visitors may feel attracted by the shapes and colors that were captured and by the lines, angles, and strokes in all directions. No one can be abstracted from the beauty of a work of art in progress.

The mural remains as the artist left it painted and will remain so since it is protected by the INAH and cannot be altered in any way.

San Miguel Times

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