Today we celebrate Cinco de Mayo, a yearly celebration held on May 5, which commemorates the anniversary of Mexico's victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, led by General Ignacio Zaragoza. The victory of a smaller, poorly equipped Mexican force against the larger and better-armed French army was a morale boost for the Mexicans.
In honor of this commemoration, we spotlight Mexican American artist, Gabriel Delgado. A self-identifying Latinx artist, Delgado immersed himself into areas of global conflict to meet with other artists and activists to gain a better understanding of the issues that he visually investigates. While in Mexico, Delgado accompanied a Cultural Attaché of the Mexican government, to meet with the Zapatista Delegation from Chiapas, Mexico during the infamous Zapatista civil society uprising of 2000.
Illustrated here is the preliminary (equation sketch) for the “Zapatista Voyage” drawing. In this equation, Delgado explores Seven Indigenous members of Mexico's Zapatista movement that have set sail from Isla Mujeres for Europe, a voyage set to simulate in reverse the conquest of Mexico by Spaniards 500 years ago. The Zapatista delegation set sail in a boat they christened "La Montaña". They hoped it will take them safely to Madrid by August 13, 2021, the 500th anniversary of the fall of Tenochtitlan, the then-Mexican capital, at the hands of Hernan Cortes. The Zapatista Army of National Liberation (or EZLN) said they hoped to disembark in Vigo, on Spain's northern coast, and then go on to Madrid.
The delegation also hopes to visit some 20 other European countries.
A spokesperson for the EZLN affirmed that unlike the Spaniards 500 years ago, the Zapatista delegation planned to make a symbolic invasion to "sow life".
For more information on Gabriel Delgado, go to www.burgesscontemporary.com