Yazmín Hidalgo: El Origen

MCBA Outlook Gallery
November 12, 2021–January 16, 2022
Free and open to the public

VIEWABLE FROM THE STREET (and from inside the shop on saturdays)

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No other country in the world has a stronger social, economic, and cultural relationship with maize/corn than Mexico, which also has the greatest number of varieties. It is the only country to have primitive varieties of this plant in daily use across the population. The domestication of maize/corn originated in ancient Mexican territory, and thus is permanently bonded to my country’s history and culture.

In this piece I use different techniques including photogravure, digital printing, and risography. This work presents three maize deities present in the Indigenous mythology from the preclassical to the postclassical period of the Mexica culture: Cinteotl (yellow maize), Xilonen (spotted maize) and Chicomecoatl (red maize), each accompanied by a photogravure of each kind of maize. Representations of the 60 varieties of maize cobs existing in the territory hang from the gallery’s ceiling. The piece also includes an excerpt of Codex Chmalpopoca, written in Nahuatl (Aztec language), which summarizes the myth of the fifth Sun (this Era) and the creation of Man thanks to maize. 

With this work I vindicate and ponder the ways of living dedicated to agriculture, while I honor the legacy of our ancient indigenous wisdom.

—Yazmín Hidalgo

Born in Cuernavaca, Mexico, in 1985, Yazmín Hidalgo is a visual artist and bookbinder. She is the founder and director of HagoLibros, a studio created in 2007 in Mexico City, specialized in book design and bookbinding, which helps artists with the creation of art books by showing them the multiple technical possibilities that bookbinding may offer. This year she was granted the Young Artist Fellowship (2019-2020) by the National Fund for Culture and Arts (FONCA, Mexico) in the graphics category. In 2018 she was invited to the Artist Residency, “The Evolving Book: Contemporary Artist Book Practices” at the Banff Centre (Canada) with the support of CIBC Emerging Artists Scholarships Endowment. The same year, she received a fellowship in the Program for Creation and Artistic Development / Artists’ Book Category (PECDA, Morelos, Mexico). In 2014 she obtained the Bookbinding and Letterpress Core Certificate at the San Francisco Center for the Book with the fellowship of the Mexican Artistic Residency Program by the National Fund for Culture and Arts (FONCA). In 2007 she got the Youth Artistic and Cultural Projects Fellowship, by the Mexican Institute for the Youth (IMJUVE, Mexico) with a project of a series of artist’ books made with chalcography. She has had four solo exhibitions and two national acquisition awards. She has taught theoretical and practical workshops on bookbinding and artist’ book production in several institutions. Her artist’ books have been acquired by Stanford University, Otto G. Richter Library Special Collections (Miami), National University of Mexico (UNAM), Alumnos 47 (MX) and Arte Lumen (MX).