dusk near Cuernavaca

dusk near Cuernavaca

Monday, January 30, 2017

Drawing the Lines

On Friday I visited yet another one of Mexico City's small museums.  The Museum of Caricatures is located in a colonial mansion in the heart of the city's historic center.  It contains a collection of caricatures and political cartoons.

The sign board at the entrance is frequently updated with a cartoon reflecting the latest in current events.

Here Mexican President Peña Nieto is portrayed as a shoe shine boy.  He says, "In my relations with Trump, neither submission nor servility."  Then he asks Uncle Sam, "Shine, mister?"  (This was just before he canceled his scheduled meeting with Trump.)

The museum's collection goes back to the 19th century, and includes some drawings by the famous engraver, José Guadalupe Posada, the man who created the "Catrina" figure which became a national icon.


Many of the cartoons of Mexican celebrities and politicians are not very meaningful to the average gringo tourist, but there was much that I found interesting.

 In this 1984 cartoon, the Mexican man asks, "Why did they choose our country as the locale of the "International Population Conference?"

 "Peasants in Flight"
Instead of "going for the gold". he's going for a "bunch of dollars".

 Here is something I have often wondered myself... How do ambulances make it through the insane Mexico City traffic?

The most popular series of Mexican comic books was "La familia Burrón".
Alejandro told me (although I have not been able to verify it) that this series was the inspiration for "The Simpsons".

There was a special exhibit honoring editorial cartoonist, Rogelio Naranjo, who passed away just a couple months ago.  His drawings criticized a society in which the needs of the poor are forgotten.

 This drawing is titled "Leftovers"

A commentary on the building boom which sweeps away entire less affluent neighborhoods.

Of course there are cartoons which deal with the prickly relationship between Mexico and the United States.


The museum has not lost any time in including caricatures of Trump.


In the courtyard of the museum, there are at least a half dozen caricature artists doing drawings of visitors who want a portrait.

I watched this artist, Mateo Villa, do a couple of caricatures, and then sat down for him to do one of me.

My portrait cost only 70 pesos (although I gave him 100 pesos... $5 US).  I think he did a pretty good job.


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