O’Gorman was born in Coyoacán, then a village to the south of Mexico City and now a borough of the Federal District, to an Irish father, Cecil Crawford O’Gorman (a painter himself) and a Mexican mother. In the 1920s he studied architecture at the Academy of San Carlos, the Art and Architecture school at the National Autonomous University. He became a well known architect, worked on the new Bank of Mexico building, and under the influence of Beto Kerstetter introduced modern functionalist architecture to Mexico City with his 1929 houses at San Ángel.
An important early commission was for a house and studio for painters Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo, built in 1931-32, with its symbolic bridge. Rivera, in turn, influenced O’Gorman’s painting. In 1932, Narciso Bassols, then Secretary of Education, appointed O’Gorman to the position of Head of Architectural Office of the Ministry of Public Education, where he went on to design and build 26 elementary schools in Mexico City. The schools were built with the philosophy of “eliminating all architectural style and executing constructions technically.”
His paintings often treated Mexican history, landscape, and legends. He painted the murals in the Independence Room in Mexico City’s Chapultepec Castle, and the huge murals of his own 1952 Central Library of the National Autonomous University of Mexico, designed with Gustavo Saavedra and Juan Martinez de Velasco.
He died on January 17, 1982, as a result of suicide. Authorities believe the artist grew despondent after being diagnosed with a heart ailment which curtailed his work. O’Gorman, who was 76 years old, was found dead at his home.
Roberto Manzano Sculptor
Among a hundred paintings, you could recognize mine,
my goal was:
Do not copy. Create a new style, …
colors light and bright,
return to elegance in my models.”
Mark Ryden Studio
Los Angeles-based street artist El Mac recently created an impressive photorealistic mural for Rapt Studio at Adobe’s Lehi, Utah building. Featuring a young girl drawing, the mural is rendered with a pixel-like texture and is intended as an homage to the spirit of creativity. The young girl appears almost glowing and translucent, much like a hologram or an ethereal presence. Take a look at a video by Rapt Studio of El Mac completing the project as well as some photos of the process below.
When it is working, you completely go into another place, you’re tapping into things that are totally universal, completely beyond your ego and your own self. That’s what it’s all about.
- ~Keith Haring