Mario’s Spanish Rhapsody
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When famous caricaturist and illustrator Mario Miranda went to Spain in 2007 on a "grand tour", he was fascinated by its majestic architecture and captivated by the culture. He visited some of the great cities of Spain like Madrid, Barcelona and Seville and travelled through the undulating Spanish countryside dotted with olives and orange trees, rich in art and history, with its museums, castles and forts. Miranda was later invited by the tourism office of Spain in Singapore to draw a series of cartoons inspired by Spain. On a torrid Saturday morning at Instituto Cervantes, the same cartoons were put up at the Capital's Instituto Cervantes to commemorate Spanish Language Day through an exhibition titled "Ironical Visions of daily Life: Mario De Miranda, Visions of Spain "Greguerias", by Ramon Gomez De La Serna" .
The works, sourced from the Spanish cultural centre's library, have him punching humour with reference to Indians in Spain. A cartoon depicts a stereotypical sketch of an Indian politician — complete with kurta and Nehru topi — giving an enthused speech to an unwitting Spanish audience. Another one juxtaposes symbols of Indian culture like Bharatanatyam and Indian classical singing with the Spanish ballet and opera. His fascination for the architecture shows in his sketches of places like the Torre Agbar Tower in Barcelona, Sagrada Familia and the Catholic church in Catalonia, among others. Miranda's works have been placed alongside some works from ABC Museum in Madrid, of Spanish writer and dramatist Ramon Gomez De La Serna's "Greguerio" series.
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