Interning for The Mexican Museum gave me the opportunity to pay tribute to Jose Guadalupe Posada’s calavera etchings. Supervised under Maria Esmeralda Renteria, Museum Studies Graduate student at SFSU, I was able to incorporate differences between Posada’s original etchings and my woodblock of his calaveras.
Posada’s line etchings of Calaveras are beautiful images that I am privileged to work with. Since these images are originally small in scale, they were blown triple its original size on a 12” x 12” wood block.
In his La Catrina, her hat is filled with a décor of lush feathers and flowers. Since I’m working with a bigger surface, this allows for more detail carving in the flowers. With this woodblock, I extend the ribcage downward and engulf the calavera in a repetition of clouds. Because La Catrina’s hat is fully decorated, I want the viewer to focus on the calavera so they won’t be distracted by the new content.
The internship isn’t over until the end of January 2014 but there is more work in progrss. This includes a video demo of the process of carving a woodblock and printing.