Olga Costa and Her Art: An Introduction

By Anna Hamling.

Published by The Arts Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Olga Costa (1913-1993), a Mexican painter of Russian descent, has never achieved the success and fame of Frida Kahlo, the best known and most celebrated female Mexican artist of the 20th Century. Costa, unlike the legendary Frida, has never painted a self portrait but she made known her preference for ‘reproducing life, truth, simplicity without ‘theatricality’ (Exposición, 19).
This extraordinary painter who emigrated with her parents to Mexico at the age of twelve, is virtually unknown to the world; yet she created and left 241 paintings; many of which one currently housed in the Museum of Modern Art in Mexico City. Her images of women and children, with an intriguing sense of colour, and her paintings of the native fruit and flowers of Mexico are the central thematic core of her art.
The focus of my paper is to examine the role and position of Olga Costa in the context of modern Mexican art and to explore Costa’s vision of the social reality in contemporary Mexico while tending to the traditions of the pre-Colombian art through the analysis of the selected paintings such as The Dead Child (1944), The Bride (1942) amongst others.

Keywords: Olga Costa, Paintings, Mexico

International Journal of the Arts in Society, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp.131-138. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.075MB).

Dr. Anna Hamling

Senior Teaching Associate (Spanish), Department of Culture and Language Studies, University of New Brunswick Frederiction, Fredericton, NB, Canada

Dr. Anna Hamling has taught Spanish, Russian and Polish language, culture and literature in Europe, Latin America and Canada. Her PhD thesis ‘Introducción a un estudio comparativo entre Miguel de Unamuno y León Tolstói’ was published by Editorial Pliegos in Madrid in 2001. The English translation ‘Tolstoy, Unamuno and Their Religious Essays. An introduction’ was published by VDM Verlang in 2010. Dr Hamling has published numerous articles of comparative nature on Unamuno and Tolstoy in Spanish, Russian and Polish journals. Recently she has been contributing to the Encyclopedia of Latin American Women Writers, The Encyclopedia of Christian Writers and The Literary Encyclopedia at http://www.LitEncyc.com.

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