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Other Colours – Fabián Chairez

By Juan Medina

The closing night of Mexican painter Fabian Chairez‘s ‘Other Colours’ was beyond my expectations.

Outside the gallery there was a friendly, relaxed vibe with delicious traditional Mexican food, beer and cocktails whilst inside at the UK Mexican Art Society, provocative oil paintings hung impressively.

I interacted with each differently. Of the eight mesmerising paintings, the oval canvas presented on the red wall, matching the catholic priests red robe, captured my attention. Named “La Eucaristía 2” the powerful symbolism and colours erotically portrayed the priest licking the blood of Christ on the cross. I observed and immersed myself in the collection impassioned and excited by the social and cultural revolution it arouses.

UK Mexican Arts Society:

Cháirez was catapulted into fame in December 2019 when his nude, feminised portrait of national revolutionary hero Emiliano Zapata went viral after being partially censored (placed behind a wall) at the famous Palace of Fine Arts in Mexico City in response to a violent protest by members of a rural movement.

Cháirez’s paintings are an act of rebellion in two ways. Artistically, he embraces the pictorial tradition, focusing mainly on the human body, to challenge the evanescence of contemporary trends. Thematically, he appropriates the objects and symbols that have shaped the Mexican nationalist imaginary with a postmodern, erotic and deliberately kitsch slant.

In his earlier work, his central theme was the male anatomy, challenging the archetypes of Mexican masculinity with eroticized and feminized charros (horsemen), Mexican wrestlers and Maras Salvatruchas gang members. Because of this work, Cháirez became an important symbol of the LGBTQ+ movement in Mexico.

It was a great priviledge to meet the artist himself, Fabian, a gentle, humble artistic and creative force. I could not resist rehoming “La Eucaristía 2” in my home in Windsor. At nearby Windsor Castle, where the infamous Henry VIII’s body lies, we recall the revolution he caused with the English Reformation which prove how weak everybody could be to “Temptation”

Thank you to everyone involved and I recommend you all check out Fabian’s work.

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