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The Mexico Chapter Continued © by KC Moore

August 9, 2011

Stirling Dickinson was instrumental in the famous Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes school of art in 1946.  He came in 1938 when San Miguel started attracting artists and writers.  Bob Smith studied at Chouinard and then transferred to this school in 1948.  After WWII, numerous veterans studying under the GI Bill were permitted to study abroad and the art school attracted Bob.  Perhaps the real attraction was Siqueiros who taught there, and had been involved with Chouinard in previous years.

Siqueiros with Students

Siqueiros with Students

Some of Bob’s fellow students included S. Greg Ganci and Martin Foshaug.  They studied together in San Miguel and stayed in contact all their lives.   Greg is left of Siqueiros and the man in the checked shirt is Enrique Cortez a direct descendant of CortezSenora Siqueiros is standing second from left.

Martin above San Miguel

Martin above San Miguel

The artists lived in the town in the bohemian era and preceded the influx of the hippies.  The town of San Miguel de Allende has continued to attract artists, writers and retirees to the present day.

The photograph shows Martin on hearth at the casa Del Inquisidor where they rented.

Martin on Hearth

Martin on Hearth

In a discussion on 8-6-11 Greg fondly recalls the place and that he had decorated it – basically having all the furniture made.  He stated that Mart painted the ‘santos’ (a painting of a saint) above the mantel.   Incidentally this painting was later donated to a Russian church in LA.

In addition to the regular classes of mural painting, advanced painting, stone lithography, drawing, landscape painting and Spanish, the students worked on the still unfinished mural.  This is the same mural Bob recalled Siqueiros swaggering in wearing a bandoleer and requesting they dig 2 feet down so the mural was positioned correctly.

Click here to see the unfinished mural as it is today.

Click here to read the story of Siqueiros and the mural.

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