Art: South of the Border

Many things that most U. S. gallery-goers don't know about Mexican art are told this week in a book, MacKinley Helm's Modern Mexican Painters (Harper; $5).

The Western Hemisphere has produced two arts all its own: 1) U. S. jazz, 2) Mexican painting. These two arts are curiously alike. Neither is much influenced by European traditions; jazz grows from Negro folk tunes, Mexican painting from Aztec and Maya religious sculpture and the primitive religious paintings (retablos) that have hung for generations, as thick as shingles, in every mud-walled Mexican church. Like jazz, Mexican...

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