José Luis Cuevas Art Collection

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The new Consul General of Mexico in Phoenix and his wife are hosting a special ceremony in the Carlos Fuentes Cultural Hall showcasing an exhibition of José Luis Cuevas’ art collection. Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez, Consul General of Mexico in Phoenix and Enrique Cortázar, cultural attaché for the Consul General of Mexico talk about the exhibition.

José Cárdenas: The Mexican Consul General Roberto Rodriguez and his wife are hosting a special ceremony in the cultural hall, "Carlos Fuentes," named after the famed Mexican essayist and novelist. There will also be an exhibition of the art collection of Jose Luis Cuevas, Mexican artist and one of the first to challenge the then dominant Mexican muralism movement, as a prominent member of Generacion de la Ruptura. Joining me tonight is the new Consul General of Mexico in Phoenix, Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez. Thank you for joining us on "Horizonte." Welcome to Phoenix, I know you've been in Arizona before, congratulations and welcome. We want to have you back on the show to talk about more general issues and matters involving your position here. But this is an exciting event, it's something I know you've talked about before, establishing this cultural center, this institute. Tell us about it and specifically some general details about the event which is coming up this Friday.

Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez: Of course, Jose. The most important thing for us is to establish this cultural center in order to have some kind of bridge between the different communities here in Phoenix, Arizona. Especially we want to show the Mexican talent, but we also want to have the local talent in order to combine efforts for this newest space. We want to use it like a bridge, in order to bring different sectors of the population, very tied to the consulate and immigration, to have more encounters between Mexican people and the people from Arizona, to promote tourism, to promote investments, to promote more trade. Because it's very important for us too, we believe it's the best part of the relationship with Arizona.

José Cárdenas: I want to talk to Enrique about Carlos Fuentes because he was a friend of his. Everybody knows about him, very famous. You're going to have his widow here to talk about this. You also have a poet who was a contemporary of Carlos Fuentes.

Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez: This first event is going to be kicking off for different kinds of events at the consulate, in this hall. We wanted to name it "Carlos Fuentes" because it's a symbol of our culture and art in Mexico. We are going to be having different kinds of exhibitions. This first exhibition is going to be related with Jose Luis Cuevas. We wanted to start with the participation of the poet, Sergio Ramirez, talking about Fuentes, as well as the widow talking about the special relation with Carlos Fuentes.

José Cárdenas: Enrique, you knew Carlos Fuentes.

Enrique Cortazar: Yes.

José Cárdenas: Everybody knows who he is, and how big of a name he was, not just in Mexico but around the world. Why is it important to remember him and his work?

Enrique Cortazar: Basically because Carlos Fuentes is maybe at this point one of the most important, or was one of the most important voices from Mexico to the world. I think that his work as a writer is also one of the best in Latin American literature and Spanish literature. That's the reason why we honor this great fighter named Carlos Fuentes. That's why we want to bring a very close friend of Carlos Fuentes, who is Jose Luis Cuevas. Which is also one of the greatest Mexican artists at this moment.

José Cárdenas: Who is still alive.

Enrique Cortazar: Yeah, who is still alive.

José Cárdenas: The person here to speak is from Nicaragua.

Enrique Cortazar: Yes.

José Cárdenas: You also know him, tell us about him.

Enrique Cortazar: Sergio Ramirez is also at this moment one of the more recognized writers from Latin America. He was a very close friend of Carlos Fuentes, they were very close. And he has been published all over the world. Ramirez' books are right now in several languages, and basically the proposal to bring Sergio Ramirez comes from -- came from the widow of Carlos Fuentes, because she knows Carlos Fuentes will be so happy to hear.

José Cárdenas: I'm sure, and an interesting choice. If we have time we'll come back to it. I wanted to make sure we talked about the timing. Kickoff is this Friday. This event goes for at least, what, days?

Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez: Yeah.

José Cárdenas: And the collection itself, tell us about that. Some of it is actually from Jose Luis Cuevas himself, who is still alive, and then a private collector.

Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez: The private collection was from different people from the region of Ciudad Juarez and El Paso. We are going to be having this collection for the whole month, and then it is going to be exhibited at the -- someplace in Tucson.

José Cárdenas: We have some pictures on the screen. Tell us about these pictures as they come up. This first one, what is its significance?

Enrique Cortazar: This piece belonged to a portfolio, a very important work that Jose Luis Cuevas made in -- together with a great writer in Mexico. They made this collection in Spain. It includes 10 prints from several iconic points from New York, from the 5th Avenue of New York.

José Cárdenas: We've got other pieces we want to show very quickly.

Enrique Cortazar: Yes.

José Cárdenas: The significance of these pieces here?

Enrique Cortazar: Well, some of these pieces long to the earlier Jose Luis Cuevas, from -- let's say from the s and s. It is something I would like to point out, that Jose Luis Cuevas, when he has one of his first exhibits in Spain, Picasso was interested in his work and bought some of his pieces in the early years.

José Cárdenas: I'm sorry, but we're almost out of time. So people can get more information we've got the phone number on the screen. Just some final words as we wrap up the show.

Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez: We want to start with these exhibitions and let know the people that we are ready to be working together with the people from Arizona. And it's going to be a new beginning.

José Cárdenas: A great start, congratulations to both of you. Thank you so much for joining us on "Horizonte." That is our show tonight, from all of us here at Eight and "Horizonte," I'm Jose Cardenas, have a good night.

Roberto Rodriguez Hernandez:Consul General, Mexico; Enrique Cortázar:Cultural Attaché, Consul General of Mexico

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