OKLAHOMA CITY – When critics of your artwork complain that your pieces are “generating hate and confrontation,” and that “(t)his is a serious offense against the former head of state ... turning him into a caricature, a puppet,” well, you know you’re doing something right.
Such is the case in Spain where Spanish artist Eugenio Merino is being sued by the National Francisco Franco Foundation, which is upset by Merino’s recent pieces that ridicules – through art – the life and memory of fascist dictator Francisco Franco, who ruled Spain from 1938 until his death in 1975, murdering hundreds of thousands of political opponents over the years. And so these days Franco is not remembered particularly fondly by many Spaniards who recall his years in power.
And yet, Franco’s legacy looms large in that European nation and there remains a vocal faction in Spanish society who admire and miss the dictator and his iron-fisted control of Spain. ...