Vivir: a los saltos [To Live: By Leaps and Bounds]
183.2 cm x 183 cm (72 1/8 in. x 72 1/16 in.)
(Buenos Aires, Argentina, 1931 - 2016, Buenos Aires, Argentina)
Latin America, Argentinean
Medium and Support:
Acrylic, tempera and/or poster paint, and pencil on particle board
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, Archer M. Huntington Museum Fund, 1973
Rómulo Macció’s title for this painting implies both a positive call to action and an ironic critique of mass media and consumer society. The central rectangle recalls a television screen, and the influence of popular media was indeed one of the hotly debated political issues of the 1960s. He interrupts the composition—as commercials interrupt a seamless television show—to suggest a sinister presence lurking behind our everyday lives. Macció’s incorporation of masks and deformed faces adds to the painting’s sense of horror and may reflect the currency of Jean-Paul Sartre’s philosophical ideas of existentialism in Buenos Aires.