78.8 F
Saturday, September 18, 2021

‘Toilet Paper Story’: Mérida printmaker responds ironically to the pandemic

Latest headlines

Guns N’ Roses cancels Mérida concert, vows to return in 2022

Guns N' Roses won't be in Mérida in 2021 after all. Los Angeles rockers Guns N' Roses...

Cholul — The small pueblo named after water wood in Northern Mérida

Although it has largely grown in popularity for newcomers, Cholul still retains its town designation as well as most of its traditions and customs.

Yucatán loosens curfew and eases limits on restaurant hours

Yucatán is easing its pandemic curfew, allowing drivers on the road at night between Sunday and Wednesday.

The best breakfasts in Yucatán

Breakfast time in Yucatán is full of delicious options, from the spicy to the sweet and savory.
Lee Steele
Lee Steele is the founding director of Roof Cat Media and has published Yucatán Magazine and other titles since 2012. Sign up for our weekly newsletters, so our top headlines will appear in your inbox each Monday and Thursday.
Spanish printmaker Manuel Taure, known for his Mérida-based Graphic Bakery, is the subject of a pandemic-themed exhibition at Galeria El Zapote.

Not long after the pandemic reached Mérida did Spanish-born printmaker Manuel Taure offer his friends little gifts, delivered Fridays to their mailbox. No social interaction required or desired.

These fortunate recipients regularly received postcard-sized hand-pulled prints with original designs, all sardonic and witty chronicles of our society in the time of coronavirus. The kicker is that they were printed on sheets of toilet paper, which as we remember, had momentarily become an object of obsession when the lockdown began.

Spanish printmaker Manuel Taure, left, is known for his Mérida-based Graphic Bakery. His “Toilet Paper Story” project delivered a small piece of art to friends’ mailboxes once a week, and is now the subject of a pandemic-themed exhibition at Galeria El Zapote.

These weekly installments have been pulled together, framed and organized into an exhibit, “Culto Al Rollo — The Toilet Paper Story,” at Galeria El Zapote, and will remain on view until March 29.

Now, they are grouped into a timeline with nine themes — “the threat,” “the impact” and “we have lost count” are three of them — and his more cryptic pieces tell a story. An early print depicted a Mexican wrestler flying through the air, roll of toilet paper in hand, with the caption “¡Ahora sí!” Others allude to hypodermic needles, face masks and even poo. At the height of the lockdown, each delivery was a dose of gallows humor. The final theme is more optimistic. Called “Throwing the Paper Roll,” it’s a series of interconnected photos of people that “represent the human side of the project making visible the relationships among us.”

Taure has engaged his admirers since arriving here 10 years ago. He used to bake bread once a week, hence the name of his studio, The Graphic Bakery. That’s all gone, and since some setbacks connected to both the pandemic and damage from last summer’s torrential rains, he’s weighing his options for the future. But for now, Taure is still in dialog with his public.

Spanish printmaker Manuel Taure, known for his Mérida-based Graphic Bakery, is the subject of a pandemic-themed exhibition at Galeria El Zapote.

One revelation for the artist is what a good medium toilet paper is for a printmaker. It’s absorbent and dries quickly.

The show is one of the first to reopen since gallery spaces were allowed to invite guests — a few at a time, and by appointment. It’s ironic that “The Toilet Paper Story,” meant to entertain his fans stuck at home, is now luring them outside.

“I ventured out to a gallery for the first time today in almost a year,” said one visitor, writing on the artist’s Facebook page, “and it was well worth it.”

To schedule a visit, contact the gallery at galeriaelzapote@gmail.com or 999-923-1391.

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

More articles

Mexico will vaccinate one million children at severe risk of COVID-19

There is an important limitation since the only vaccine authorized for emergency use in children under 18 is Pfizer’s.

Shorebirds in the Yucatán: endangered travelers

18% of the total bird population in Yucatán is in danger of extinction as a result of habitat loss, the introduction of invasive and predatory species, overfishing, and the climate crisis.

Casa Limonero — This classic Mérida home is now a modernized short-term rental in Santiago

“Casa Limonero just has such an authentic Mérida feeling,” says Trevor. “It’s modern enough to feel new and welcoming, but colonial enough to make you feel like you’re in Yucatán.”

Rare ancient Mayan vessel discovered in the path of the Tren Maya

The piece is engraved with a hieroglyphic text, whose type dates from the end of the Early Classic to the Late Classic period (600 and 800 A.D.), attributed to the Oxkintok area.

Here’s how to plant a tree in Mérida

For trees to grow healthy and not pose a danger to properties or citizens, one must consider Mérida’s infrastructure.

The grand ancient city of Becán — a microcosm of Maya history

Because of Becán’s longevity, in its history, we can see evidence of a microcosm of Mayan chronology packed into a single site.

Controversy over new Reforma sculpture: The head of an Olmec woman will be designed by a man

The new sculpture will be named Tlali, which means Earth in Nahuatl, and it will be created by sculptor Pedro Reyes. 

Yucatán COVID infections rise for the 5th consecutive week

Photo: Courtesy Daily coronavirus infections jumped 6.4% since the beginning of August, Yucatán health ministry data shows.

Obscurities: We found 5 of Mérida’s hidden treasures

Luca's patio is great for brunch. Photo: Maggie Cale I love finding new little spots to eat, shop,...

After 9/11, a New York diaspora in Mexico

Nearly 20 years after the attack, I am far away from the 9/11 Memorial & Museum, seen here just yesterday. Photo:...