Saturday, February 19, 2011


Perro de Luna, 1973 LITHOGRAPH
Rufino Tamayo’s legacy to the history of art is truly found in Tamayo’s oeuvre of graphic prints, in which Tamayo cultivated every technique. A truly innovative print-maker, Rufino Tamayo’s graphic work was produced between 1925 and 1991 and includes the mediums of woodcuts, lithographs, etchings, aquatints, and mixografia prints.

In the early 1970's, printer Luis Remba approached Rufino Tamayo to produce a series of lithographs. Although Tamayo was interested, he made it clear that he was looking for new horizons within the medium - particularly seeking ways to get more volume and texture into his original prints. Together Luis Remba & Rufino Tamayo expanded the technical and aesthetic possibilities of the graphic arts by developing a new genre of multiples, which they named Mixografia.

Dos Hermanos, 1987 MIXOGRAPH
The Mixografia technique is a unique fine art printing process that allows for the production of prints with three-dimensional texture. The quality of a Mixografia print is similar to that of a fresco or bas-relief, in which the surface of the paper has a kind of sculptural depth. The technique not only registered the texture and volume of Rufino Tamayo's design, but it also granted Tamayo the freedom to use any combination of solid materials in its creation. Rufino Tamayo was delighted with the Mixografia process, and Tamayo created some 80 Original Mixographs over his lifetime.

Due to the inability of commercial paper to withstand the stress of the Mixografia three-dimensional printing technique, a more resilient handmade paper was also invented. The paper of a Mixografia print has a heavy and thick consistency that further enhances the sculptural three-dimensionality of a Mixografia print.

Relief Sculpture from Pelenque Ruins
Greatly influenced by his Mexican and Zapotec heritage, much of Rufino Tamayo’s artwork, particularly Tamayo’s Mixografia prints, illustrate the same weight and feel of Pre-Columbian stone reliefs and sculptures. Rufino Tamayo became interested in Pre-Columbian art as early as 1926, when Tamayo became the head of the department of ethnographic drawing at the National Museum of Archaeology in Mexico City.

Nocturno, 1975 ETCHING
Most of the compositions in Rufino Tamayo’s original graphics are extremely simple yet highly inventive in their technicality. Tamayo was known for taking an elementary drawing and filling it with structural elements, textures and colors obtaining striking etchings, lithographs and mixographs created with eloquent and economical expression.

Hombre, 1979 LITHOGRAPH
Rufino Tamayo was one of the first artists in Latin America to interpret his roots without historicism, anecdote, or proclamation. In doing so, Rufino Tamayo formed one of the most brilliant chapters of the already rich and prestigious field of original graphic art in Mexico.

To view the gallery’s collection of available Rufino Tamayo
Prints please visit our website:

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