The Other Pop

• Diego Rivera, Flower Festival: Feast of Santa Anita, 1931
Hot Bread Kitchen

Diego Rivera was a painter of the people. He infused his revolutionary beliefs into murals depicting stylized scenes from Mexican history and folk culture. Unlike Pop artist Andy Warhol, who transformed the Campbell’s soup can into a work of art, Rivera was committed to making art about the public and displayed for the public. More than seventy years later, his work found its way into the Museum of Modern Art, which charges $25 for one admissions ticket. The people he tried to reach would never be able to see his work today. That leaves us with colorful paintings that seem a little too bold for a tight gallery space. Read more about the irony in this article by Hamid Dabashi.

• Diego Rivera, The Flower Carrier, 1935
Hot Bread Kitchen

If you haven’t tried the bread from Hot Bread Kitchen and you live in New York, rush to you nearest Greenmarket before the tortillas sell out. HBK is not your typical bakery. Their programs help foreign-born and low-income women find a place in the food industry. The breads include tortillas, lavash, nan-e barbari, and m’smen. If you don’t know what all of those taste like, it’s time you found out. Skip the multigrain loaf and try these multi-ethnic breads. If you don’t live in New York but still want to sample these breads, you can order a gift box full of their best products.

Brazilian Baroque

• Beatriz Milhazes, Mariposa, 2004
Desert Rose Frame by Anthropologie
Crochet Triangle Purse by Marija
Soutache Earrings by Diana
Bright Blue Rose Hat by Eve

Beatriz Milhazes creates carnivals of color and pattern on the surfaces of her abstract paintings. Layer by layer, she paints individual motifs on sheets of plastic, glues them on the canvas, and peels off the plastic. The explosions of color originate in a disciplined and rational working process. She says that applying each motif introduces new conflict into the composition, and the work is done when all the elements come into balance. The finished surface looks like a wall that’s been exposed to the elements, slightly chipped yet still brilliant.

• Beatriz Milhazes, Succulent Eggplants, 1996
Amaryllis Measuring Cups by Anthropologie
Small Purse by Michelle
Recycled Paper Bracelet by Francis Oliveira
Soutache Earrings by Diana

She considers her work abstract, and yet the details reveal a complex history of Brazilian and European influences. Matisse’s cut-outs, Mondrian’s grids, and the arabesques of Brazilian Baroque echo in her work. Botanical patterns meander throughout, inspired by strolls in the Rio de Janeiro Gardens located next to her studio. Milhazes compresses past and present, Brazil and Europe, into sophisticated eye candy. Unlike more sombre abstract painters, Milhazes is not afraid to introduce a little Brazilian flair into her playful explorations of color and geometric structure.

• Beatriz Milhazes, Peace and Love, 2005
Etro Spring 2012
• Sculpture by John Chamberlain
Cotton Handbag by Nareenat

In 2004, Milhazes started working on art for public spaces. For the Gloucester Road Tube station in west London, she translated her motifs to a bigger canvas, the area between nineteen vaulted arches.

More on Beatriz

Headdress

The incredibly detailed and skillful carving of Chalchiuhtlicue, an goddess associated with maize, reflects the importance of such a figure and its significance in Aztec culture. (framing her head are two cotton tassels)

Inca Stories Fields2 • Chalchiuhtlicue • Fey Series Sand

This full-length figure, either Quetzalcoatl or a Hauxtec ruler, reflects the fusion of the Aztec and Huaxtec cultures in the patterns and shapes of the clothing.

Originally the headdress of the figure would have had five vertical flower pistils as well as two tassels and rings at each ear. The figure is Macuilxochitl, (whose name means five flower) the god of music and dance.