Our Lady of Voluptuousness

On many occasions I have had the pleasure of writing notes to the catalog about the delicious work of Martha Jimenez Perez. At all times I have affirmed that her speech is not projected on the influences of the work of the unforgettable Colombian Fernando Botero. While both discourses enjoy the fun distortion of the exaggerated volumes and the preference for female figures, the conceptions that animate them and their creation processes are completely different. But as it is characteristic of the appreciative process to associate the images to identify them, in the visual praxis of the majority of the public - from the considered medium to the specialized one - is the immediate reference, before the slightest projection of the fatness of the figure, to The "Botero influence".

While Botero seizes fat as an "affectionate mockery" to articulate an entire catalog of fine social parodies, Martha Jimenez assumes fattening as a representation of a cultural logic concerning the generic characteristics of the Cuban female: a robust, coppery female who describes the ideal of Creole women, internationalized and consumed, such as rum, rumba and tobacco, until the 1960s.

Martha rediscovers the voluptuous and opulent woman in the venerable matrons who accompany us at home, where they are still, with grace, in the daily raiding, and which are only noticed and desired by the Cuban; that popular or popular populace, the representative of a criollism of resistance, who does not understand how it has become possible to now like tall females, thin and narrow hips. But the artist redefines her obese mulattoes and gives them a national symbolism, through island personalization, marked by her own decadence in the taste of her men of the after, the present and the tomorrow. In spite of its decadence the good thick mulatto shows its grace and of a juicy and suffocating lust like a fruit pump, of a levity that arrives at the weightlessness, of a corresponding melancholy from the solitude and lunar coldness, of a popular wisdom that takes her to not dispense with the candles, or the illustrative gossip, and give a sewing to the parts that are separated and worth repairing.

Martha Jimenez, "Doña Martha", continues to weave the fate of her identitarian characters, she watches over her daily diet, her appetites, her dreams, her tribulations. From painting first, painting afterwards, ceramics always and now the simultaneity of the three. And realities. The permanent fattening of their mulattoes is the guarantee of the continuity of our cultural cannibalism, in the midst of a world disturbed by problems with pressure and cholesterol, a world that insists on becoming homogeneously round and englobarnos with him, as a whole.

By: Lic. Pavel Alejandro Barrios Sosa.
January 2009.