“You could easily say ‘I can’t believe Rubens held such sway deep into the 18th century in Latin America as a touchpoint. Wow. That’s profound.’ But that, to me, is much less important than rethinking fundamental categories of picture making.”
One of the biggest influences on art in the Spanish Americas from the 16th through 18th centuries was Peter Paul Rubens. Although the renowned Flemish artist never traveled to the Americas himself, missionaries, merchants, and colonizers flooded the region with prints of his work. These images became the basis for large religious paintings and sculptures, but the resulting works have long been written off as mere copies and have received little critical attention. In his new book Rubens in Repeat: The Logic of the Copy in Colonial Latin America, Aaron M. Hyman explores how artists, particularly in Peru and Mexico, expanded on Rubens’s designs, creating their own inventive compositions.
In this episode, Hyman discusses his new framework for understanding copies and improvisation in Spanish colonial art. He also explains how studying art in Latin America sheds new light on European works of the period. Hyman is an assistant professor of art history at Johns Hopkins University.
For images, transcripts, and more, visit https://blogs.getty.edu/iris/podcast-riffing-on-rubens/ or http://www.getty.edu/podcasts/