17/4/12 – Labelling and Packaging is hard to miss
The packaging for Espolon Tequila has become an area of fascination and the labelling may feature similarities with the Mexican Day of the Dead festival and Posadas’s work. According to the Espolon website the packaging reflects the beliefs and traditions among the aztec community within Mexico. The rooster is juxtaposed next to other skeletal figures running in different directions.
The skeletons also feature humorous and animated expressions, which may attempt to imitate life and the giant, stampeding rooster. The labelling also features a colour palette comprising of dark brown, ligt brown and red, which may combine a sense of authenticity with a contemporary feel. The other image features a range of skeletons performing daily tasks and activities, which may feature a close connection with the Day of the Dead. The characters appear quite similar to the merchandise that is sold at the festival, which features skeletal figures mimicking living subjects.
The labelling appears very similar to Jose Guadalupe Posada’s work and Regina. M. Marchi focuses upon Posada’s designs, which have significantly influenced the perception of death within Mexico as well as the Day of the Dead Festival. Marchi also explains that Posada’s work features skeletal figures, which also replicate the living through their clothes and their animated gestures. One could argue that Posada’s exaggerates the skeleton’s jawline, which provides each figure with life like characteristics.
Posada’s skeletal figures are constantly engaged in various activity’s or chores, which creates a very dynamic composition between the different shapes or forms within the image. Posada’s work also features a high level of movement and motion, which may suggest that these skeletal figures are more than just inanimate objects. According to Marchi, Posada’s work was not recognised until the 1960’s, although the artist’s style has influenced many forms of popular culture, especially merchandise that is designed specifically for the Day of the Dead festival.
Espolon also features a very animated and dynamic compositions between the skeletal figures who are juxtaposed next to fresh produce, flowers or animals. Perhaps the style of clothing and the skeleton’s expressions or gestures also generates very life like features, which may also combine elements of popular culture with traditional Mexican styles or imagery.
Posada’s piece, Calavera of Don Quijote is very similar to the Espolon Label at the top of the page and perhaps the company appropriated the artist’s work. Instead of using the skeletal remains of an animal, Espolon have used a Rooster, which significantly emphasises the border between the living and the deceased.
Espolon Tequila, http://www.tequilaespolon.com/en/en-main.php?age=verified (accessed 17/4/12)
Marchi, Regina.M. The Day of the Dead in the USA: The Migration and Transformation of a Cultural Phenomenan. New Jersey: Rutgers University Press, 2009. p.26-27