Posada, José Guadalupe

Posada, José Guadalupe

(hōsā` gwä'thälo͞o`pā pōsä`thä), 1852–1913, Mexican artist. Of peasant stock, he became one of the greatest popular artists of the Americas and influenced the generation of Orozco and Rivera. An imagery of violence was characteristic of him, and he used distortion, caricature, and vigorous lines and contrasts. Working mainly in lithography, woodcuts and metalcuts, and relief etching, he produced thousands of prints that were sold cheaply to the masses; prints are often called Posadas after him. He attacked the Porfirio Díaz dictatorship and was sympathetic to the workers and peasants who became revolutionaries in 1910. Posada also illustrated popular ballads and festivals and did a series on the dance of death and on crimes and executions.


See study by F. Gamboa (1944).

Posada, José Guadalupe


Born Feb. 2, 1851, in Aguas-calientes; died Jan. 20, 1913, in Mexico City. Mexican graphic artist.

Posada, who studied graphic arts with M. Manilla, began working in Mexico City at the publishing house of A. Vanegas Arroyo in 1887. He worked for many newspapers, producing more than 15,000 wood engravings. Posada’s prints were permeated by traditional motifs from Mexican folklore and, at the same time, developed the new principles of revolutionary art. These principles included topicality, social incisiveness, and a simple artistic idiom understood by the common people. Posada is considered the founder of 20th-century Mexican graphic arts.


Beltran, A. “Kh. G. Posada.” Iskusstvo, 1958, no. 1. [Chariot, J.] J. G. Posada. Mexico City, 1947.