The process of construction of a Galician art appears linked since the 19th century to the formulation of an idea of reconstruction of the collective identity , of an idea of nation –formed according to the historical moment under diverse denominations: province, region, nation– and in In this sense, throughout this century and a half, there are constant references and debates that link the vision of a painting or a plastic art of its own to cultural development in general, in which the literary and linguistic fact had a singular role.
It must be taken into account that the creation of the Galician movement is key to understanding this process –even for those who were not linked to it– since this movement pursues, in the words of Xoán González-Millán, following Jürgen Habermas, “the creation of a Galician national public space” which, in the case of the plastic arts, is linked to the attempts to project the Galician language in areas such as literature, theater or research on the most varied aspects of reality Galician, which has in the Seminary of Galician Studies –created in 1923– an outstanding exponent.
This process of conformation and construction of a national cultural space acquired a significant acceleration in the first third of the 20th century and was only slowed down by the fracture caused by the Civil War. The years prior to the conflict are times in which we witness the most serious attempts to renew the plastic scene: from the work and reflection on the arts of Castelao to the “Os Novos” movement, known as the Galician Art Renewal Movement ( Maside, Souto, Colmeiro, Torres...), passing through the artists from A Coruña who revolve around the avant-garde magazine Alfar (Francisco Miguel, Huici). With them and complementing their work would be the attempts at theoretical reflection by intellectuals, such as the extremely important Rafael Dieste, who form part of and complete this process.
While in Galicia the entire cultural fabric created in the pre-war period is being destroyed, in the rest of Spain under the control of the Republic there is an important presence of Galician artists and intellectuals: Castelao, Arturo Souto, Rafael Dieste, Lorenzo Varela... All of them collaborate in different cultural initiatives, carrying out works that reflect the political and social situation of the moment, editing and illustrating cultural publications, some specifically aimed at Galicians, among which the Nova Galicia magazine, published in Barcelona between April 1937 and July 1938, a publication in which we find illustrations above all by Castelao, especially his War Albums, but also by Manuel Colmeiro; by Arturo Souto, from the War Debuxos; by Luis Seoane, from his series Estampas da treason; and among the non-Galician, the presence of Ramón Gaya stands out.
After the war, hundreds of thousands of people in Galicia are forced to leave, particularly to America , which is why a very important intellectual nucleus is created. The exiles are concentrated mainly in the places of traditional emigration, mainly in Argentina, Uruguay and Mexico, although there is a dispersion throughout the continent.
The artists exhibited in this MARCO exhibition in Vigo were: Maruja Mallo, Ángel Botello, Arturo Souto, Carlos Velo, Castelao, Eugenio Granell, Isaac Díaz Pardo, José Suárez, Luis Seoane and Manuel Colmeiro.
Collective catalog, 2005. Texts: Xerardo Álvarez Galego, Antonio Baltar, Eduardo Blanco-Amor, Castelao, Manuel Colmeiro, Isaac Díaz Pardo, Rafael Dieste, Miguel Anxo Fernández, Eugenio Granell, Carlos López Bernárdez, Maruja Mallo, Luis Seoane, Luis Soto Fernández, Lorenzo Varela, Carlos Vela. Language: Galician / Spanish. Pages: 221 Binding: Softcover Format: 24 x 30 cm