“¡Viva! Mexico’s Independence” Exhibition at Harry Ransom Center Marks Anniversaries

Jan. 4, 2010

AUSTIN, Texas — The Harry Ransom Center, a humanities research library and museum at The University of Texas at Austin, will present the exhibition "¡Viva! Mexico's Independence," showcasing items from the center's holdings that relate to the history of Spain's original conquest of Mexico, Mexico's independence from Spain and subsequent revolutionary activities within Mexico.

¡Viva! Mexico's Independence

The exhibition will be on view in 2010, a year that marks the 200th anniversary of Mexico's independence from Spain and the 100th anniversary of the Mexican Revolution, pivotal events in Mexico's struggle for self-governance.

Running Feb. 9-Aug. 1, the exhibition will feature such rarities as the original 1529 document appointing Hernán Cortés captain general of New Spain; unpublished letters exchanged between the ill-fated Ferdinand Maximilian, emperor of Mexico, and his wife Carlotta; original documentary photographs of the Mexican Revolution along with period broadsides illustrated by José Guadalupe Posada; and artistic responses to the long history of Mexico's conquest and revolt.

"The exhibition isn't a comprehensive historical overview, but instead highlights items from the Ransom Center's collections," said Cathy Henderson, exhibition curator and associate director at the Ransom Center. "Of greater interest to visitors, perhaps, will be various artistic responses to these historical events ranging from Miguel Covarrubias's illustrations for an edition of Bernal Díaz Del Castillo's 'The Discovery and Conquest of Mexico, 1517-1521' to cinematic interpretations of Mexico's history."

The exhibition, which will feature about 50 items, is in collaboration with the university's Graduate School and the Consulado General de México en Austin.

High-resolution press images are available.

"¡Viva! Mexico's Independence" can be seen at the Ransom Center on Tuesdays through Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with extended Thursday hours to 7 p.m. On Saturdays and Sundays the galleries are open from noon to 5 p.m. The galleries are closed on Mondays.

For more information, contact: Jennifer Tisdale, Harry Huntt Ransom Humanities Research Center, 512 471 8949;  Alicia Dietrich, Harry Huntt Ransom Humanities Research Center, 512-232-3667.