Francisco Toledo

Juchitan, Oaxaca, 1940 -

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How is it possible that Benito Juárez, Mexico's first president of indigenous origin, like the Zapotec Francisco Toledo itself, becomes an insect, without having to do somewhat with Kafka? What vision dominates the mind of Francisco Toledo when he portrays himself as "clever Rabbit" full of energy? Or when an insect struggling with death represented the way we all know, as a human skeleton? The answer is simple but not obvious. I'll try to give it along the following text.

Francisco Toledo consider the animals as equivalent to man and same value. Both are the same creature. Born of the same nature and are an integral part, with equal rights, from the infinity of cosmic thought. That is the Toledo’s world view. But here there is much more: his artistic vision. The animal like emblem of all live being, symbol of both fertility and sensuality, dominates everything in his creation. Besides the many self-portraits, he has done since the days of his youth and today, with advancing age, they become more and more frequent, animal imagery is the predominant element of his artistic thought and a key reason in the world of his images. The animals are always present: fantastic, absurd, imaginary, never or infrequent real. Animals establishes metamorphosis with humans, mate with them, or with other different species. Unique and all-encompassing: the life.

Should we define Francisco Toledo as a philosopher of nature in the manner of Jean Jacques Rousseau? No way. This Mexican painter is neither painter of nature nor "animalier" in the style of those who know the history of European art. He feeds himself of his own cultural heritage bequeathed by the Mexican art and in particular indigenous art. There are his roots. (Source: by Erika Billeter in "Francisco Toledo: Fantastic Zoology", Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic)


Francisco Toledo Main Solo Exhibitions


1959 Galeria Antonio Souza, Mexico City.

1959 Fort Worth Art Center, Fort Worth, Texas.

1962 Kunstnaneshus, Oslo.

1963 Galerie Karl Flinker, Paris.

1964 Hamilton Galleries, London.

1964 Saidenberg Gallery, New York.

1964 Gallery Moos, Ginebra.

1964 Galerie René Andrieu, Toulouse, France.

1964 Galerie Dieter Brusberg, Hannover, Germany.

1965 Saidenberg Gallery, New York.

1965 Galeria Antonio Souza, Mexico City.

1965 Galerie Karl Flinker, text by André Pieyre de Mandiargues, Paris.

1965 Galerie Haaken, Oslo.

1965 Galeria Misrachi, Mexico City.

1967 Tooth Gallery, London.

1967 Galerie René Andrieu, Toulouse, France.

1967 Galerie Daniel Gervis, text by Henry Miler, Paris.

1968 Galería Juan Martin, Mexico City.

1969 Galería Juan Martin, text by Luis Cardoza y Aragon, Mexico City.

1970 Galería Juan Martin, Mexico City.

1970 Jack Misrachi Gallery, text by Ernest S. Heller, New York.

1970 Galería Arvil, Mexico City.

1972 Galería Juan Martin, text by Jorge Alberto Manrique, Mexico City.

1974 Marta Jackson Gallery, New York.

1975 Galería Juan Martin, Mexico City.

1975 Marta Jackson Gallery, text by Salvador Elizondo, New York.

1976 "Francisco Toledo: El minuto de Dios", Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Bogotá, Colombia.

1977 "Francisco Toledo: Guachachi", Martha Jackson Gallery, New York.

1978 Everson Museum of Art, text by Ronald A. Kutcha, Syracuse, New York.

1980 Galeria de Arte Mexicano, Mexico City.

1980 Centro Cultural de México, Paris.

1980 "Francisco Toledo: Exposición Retrospectiva 1963-1979", Museo de Arte Moderno, Mexico City

1983 Museo Biblioteca Pape, text by Carlos Monsiváis, Monclova, Coahuila.

1983 Galeria de Arte Mexicano, text by Verónica Volkow,Mexico City.

1983 Instituto Fernando Gordillo, Managua.

1984 Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City.

1985 Nippon Gallery, Tokio.

1986 Museo Regional de Guadalajara, Jalisco.

1986 Galería López Quiroga, Mexico City.

1988 The Mexican Fine Arts Center Museum, Chicago.

1992 Galería del Estado,Xalapa de Enriquez, Veracruz

1993 Museo Regional de Guadalajara

1993 Instituto Cultural Cabañas

1993 Secretaría de Cultura del Gobierno del Estado de Jalisco.

1993 Fundación Cultural Cremi

1995 Associated American Artists, New York.

1995 Centro Gallego de Arte Contemporáneo, Santiago de Compostela.

1996 "Francisco Toledo Retrospectiva", Galería Arvil, Ciudad de México.

1996 Associated American Artists, New York.

1997 "Serie Insectario, procedentes de un cuaderno", Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca (MACO).

2000 "Francisco Toledo", Whitechapel Art Gallery, Londrés.

2000 "Francisco Toledo", Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid.

2001 "Francisco Toledo", Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Oaxaca (MACO).

2003-2006 "Zoología fantástica Homenaje a Jorge Luis Borges", exhibited thirty eigth times in America, Europe and Asia.

2004 "Francisco Toledo", Museo Nacional de Antropología, Mexico City.