Teresa Margolles and the Aesthetics of Death

Author(s) Julia Banwell

Language: English

Genre(s): Art and Music

Series: Iberian and Latin American Studies

  • June 2015 · 240 pages ·216x138mm

  • · Hardback - 9781783162499
  • · eBook - pdf - 9781783162505
  • · eBook - epub - 9781783162512

About The Book

This book is the first and most extensive academic monograph to be published on the work of the Mexican neo-conceptual artist Teresa Margolles. A range of art works produced by Margolles throughout the length of her career, which began in the 1990s (as part of the SEMEFO collective) and continues to the present day, are explored from such theoretical perspectives as the philosophy of death; the difficult spectatorship of death and the corpse; approaches to the representation of death and dead bodies in art from inside and outside Mexico; and the response of art to traumatic events in Mexico during and since the 1990s. The extensive scope of the study is a significant contribution to scholarly material on the artist, attending to difficult questions around art and ethics; its analysis of Margolles’s work is situated within the contexts of the long tradition of the display of real bodies and body parts in Mexican visual culture, against the backdrop of the effects of NAFTA and the War on Drugs.


‘This is a fascinating and sensitively thought through account of a complex aesthetic, which will be a key text for English-speaking readers interested in the work of Teresa Margolles.’
Professor Oriana Baddeley, University of the Arts London


List of Illustrations
Chapter One
From Social Corpus to Social Corpse: Social Issues in Teresa Margolles’ Artwork
Chapter Two
The Aesthetics of Death
Chapter Three
Morgue and Corpse Art
Chapter Four
Performance of Objects and Substances
Chapter Five
Margolles, Mexican Art and Mexicanness

About the Author(s)

Author(s): Julia Banwell

Dr Julia Banwell is a lecturer in Hispanic Studies at the University of Sheffield. She has written works on photography in the Mexican Revolution and the reporting of injury and death in sports.

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