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is one of Mexico’s foremost artists. Born in Orizaba, Veracruz,
Mexico, in 1940, she studied painting and sculpture at the National Fine
Arts Institute in Mexico city, and graphic design in Poland. Ms. Tarragó
has held major exhibitions in galleries and museums throughout Mexico,
the United States, Europe, Israel, and Turkey.
Of her major exhibit in Beirut, 2002, Stephanie Saldana writes:
One of Mexico’s premiere modern artists, Tarragó infuses her work with a sense of magical realism, that colorful space between dream and reality where even the ordinary become holy... Despite the international appeal of her work, Tarragó is clearly bound to her local roots, with the bright, almost outlandish colors in her engravings reflecting both Mexican religious folk art and the inescapable influence of the likes of Mexican modern art giants Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Hers is not just visual art, but art for all the senses. You can almost taste it. This enormously expansive quality makes Tarragó less a painter than a poet who has found her comfort in the visual world.
Even in her minor works, Tarragó maintains the ability to surpise. Her engravings are childlike consciousness unleashed, containing the same emotional force as a small girl (Tarragó continues to use a childhood version of herself) easily startled by the world, worried about ghosts in the closet and creatures beneath the bed.
Tarragó is difficult to categorize. Her works have the unfinished touch of Mexican folk altars, the surrealism, surprise, and religious weight of the Russian painter Marc Chagall. The catch is that she happens to think like surrealist Argentinean author Jorge Luis Borges, so her paintings are less likely to have flocks of birds in the sky than a herd of elephants, less likely to have thunderstorms than raining fish. She functions on an entirely different creative planet.
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