Biographies are very difficult to write so that they engage every reader, particularly in graphic novel form. Unfortunately, this book doesn’t succeed in this task. Francisco De La Mora’s Diego Rivera guides us through the tumultuous life of this famed Mexican artist: his artistic evolutions, impact on Mexican muralism and his many adventurous marriages, including his third to the iconic Frida Kahlo.
Whilst the story is informative, it struggles to keep your attention, as the characters’ strifes don’t draw much investment – nor does it flow too easily, with events catalogued against one another rather than transitioning through informative narrative and coherence.
Still, if the narrative is rather flat, the artwork is much more interesting. José Luis Pescador has managed to perfectly capture Rivera’s likeness, making him stand out in every panel he’s in and has done an excellent job of replicating both his famed murals and Kahlo’s distinct portraits. The illustrations appear to shift as the story continues too, almost mimicking its main character’s journey as an artist. I finished this book satisfied at having learned about Diego Rivera, while doubtful as to the prospect of picking it up again.
Diego Rivera, Francesco De La Mora & José Luis Pescador (SelfMadeHero)
Price: £16.99. Info: here
words GWIL WILLIAMS for Buzz Culture