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Monday, February 18, 2008

SAMA welcomes El Cuerpo Adornado to San Antonio

SAMA Welcomes El Cuerpo Adornado:
Exploring the Aesthetic Spirit of Mexico
Photographs by George O. Jackson, Jr.

March 15 through May 25th
Focus Gallery, San Antonio Museum of Art

The San Antonio Museum of Art announces El Cuerpo Adornado: Exploring the Aesthetic Spirit, Photographs by George O. Jackson, Jr. opening to the public March 15, 2008. The exhibition, comprised of 25 powerful, life-size color giclĂ© photographs depicting little-seen Mexican festivals, is scheduled as part of the Museum’s Fiesta celebrations. SAMA also welcomes the public to enjoy free admission to the exhibition (and the entire Museum) until 10 pm on opening day in honor of the city-wide Luminaria arts festival.

These striking images explore indigenous ethno-aesthetics through contemporary body painting among inhabitants of the Sierra Huasteca region of eastern Mexico . Jackson captured these photographs throughout 1991 and 1994 with a 35mm camera. The images were taken during the February Carnival celebrations that usher in the more solemn Lenten season. El Cuerpo Adornado focuses on color, form, and texture rather than anthropological interpretations on meaning and cultural context. It is designed to alert the viewer to aesthetic choices that bombard the visual senses.

Jackson has spent the last twenty years recording events related to the ritual calendar of indigenous Mexico . He has crisscrossed the country dozens of times documenting the annual rituals of over 150 communities, representing over 50 indigenous groups. Jackson ’s success has been largely due to a combination of great technical skill, an extraordinary photographic eye, an uncanny ability to be invited to witness rarely photographed festive events, and pure, old fashioned tenacity.

George O. Jackson, Jr. was born in Houston , Texas in 1941 and is the descendant of Manuel Maria de Lano, who was the Mayor of Monterrey and was Governor of the State of Nuevo Leon twice. Jackson ’s work has been widely shown in universities and museums throughout the United States and Mexico , and many of his remarkable photographs have been published in magazines, books, and exhibition catalogues here and abroad. In fall of 2007, Jackson was given a one-man show at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History in Washington , D.C.

This exhibition was made possible by a generous grant from The Goldsbury Foundation, with additional support from the Friends of Latin American Art, a support group of the San Antonio Museum of Art.

For a complete calendar listing of public exhibitions, lectures and other special events open to the public, visit SAMA’s Web site at

Leigh Baldwin
Communications Manager
San Antonio Museum of Art
200 West Jones Avenue
San Antonio, TX 78215

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