IMALABRA is a documentary about the Puerto Rican artist Antonio Martorell in which he tells us about different aspects of his life as an artist, elaborating on crucial subjects from his own cosmovision. His themes are art and culture, the Puerto Rican struggle for independence, politics and identity in a globalized world. He developes themes that are fundamental for the Puerto Ricans but which at the same time acquire an international character considering the universal character of artistic language. One of the central aspects of political identity that Martorell discusses is that the artist responds to the historic time in which he or she lives and from which artistic work is inseperable. From that he creates the concept of "Imalabra", bringing together the Spanish words for image (Imagen) and word (Palabra) recognizing the inevitable duality between both. The narrative flows in concert with the images of Martorell's artistic work and is interlaced with the dialog that brings us close to the persona and which shows us a true vision of who he is. Duration: 48 min.
Main cast of IMALABRA
Antonio ("Toño) Martorell Cardona (born 1939) is a Puerto Rican painter, graphic artist, writer and radio and television personality. He regularly exhibits in Puerto Rico and the United States and participates in arts events around the world. He spends his time between his workshops in Ponce, Hato Rey, and New York, his presentations wordlwide and his academic work in Cayey, Puerto Rico.
He first started showing interest in arts as a small child with drawings.He studied diplomacy at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. and then went to study painting with Julio Martín Caro in Madrid. In the 1960s, he worked in Ponce, colaborating with Sor Isolina Ferre in the creation of community art workshops. He also worked at the workshop of Lorenzo Homar at the Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña. He currently is the Resident Artist of the University of Puerto Rico at Cayey and directs the Ramón Frade Museum at the same institution.
Martorell currently has a workshop in New York and another one on at Playa de Ponce. He participated in the scenography of "Celebración Verdiana " for the opera by Placido Domingo. Martorell was the winner of the Bienal de Arte de San Juan, and has illustrated books of several authors including Alma Rosa Flor, Heraclio Cepeda, Nicholasa Mohr, and Pura Belpré. He also illustrated the ABC de Puerto Rico published by Troutman Press. In the 1980s, Martorell dedicated himself to writing, producing various books. As a writer, Martorell has written books such as La piel de la memoria (translated as Memory's Tattoo by Andrew Hurley) and El libro dibujado (The Drawn Book). He currently writes a column for Escenario, a section of Puerto Rican newspaper El Vocero.
The most extensive publication on Martorell's work is Antonio Díaz-Royo's biography Martorell: la aventura de la creación (The Adventure of Creation).
His paintings are found at the Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña, Museo de la Universidad de Puerto Rico, Museo de Arte de Ponce, Museo de arte de Puerto Rico, Galería Nacional de San Salvador, Museo de Arte Moderno de México, Museo del Barrio, and Whitney Museum.
IMALABRA, es un documental sobre el artista Puertorriqueño Antonio Martorell, el cual nos narra diferentes aspectos de su vida como artista, abordando temas cruciales desde su propia cosmovisión, temas sobre el arte y la cultura, sobre la lucha independentista de los Puertorriqueños, sobre política e identidad en un mundo globalizado, aborda temas fundamentales de los Puertorriqueños, pero que a su vez adquieren un carácter internacional, considerando el carácter universal del lenguaje artístico, Martorell aborda como uno de los aspectos centrales la identidad política, del artista que responde al tiempo histórico que le toca vivir y que es inseparable de su trabajo de allí es donde él mismo acuña el concepto de “Imalabra” Imagen y Palabra, como una dualidad inevitable entre ambas. La narrativa fluye en un tenor donde las imágenes del trabajo artístico de Martorell se entrelazan con el diálogo que nos acerca al personaje y nos muestra una visión acertada de quien es él. Duración 48min