(b Mexico City, 1836; d Mexico City, 1868).
Mexican illustrator and printmaker. According to the obituary by Hilarión Frías y Soto, Escalante “was fortunate enough to escape scholastic corruption … His training was artistic, though disgracefully very incomplete.” This may indicate that Escalante trained in lithographic workshops without attending the Academia de S. Carlos, a recently restructured school for artists.
Although Escalante’s portrait of Pedro Picasso—his music teacher—was accepted at the Academia’s exhibition of 1855, his work as an illustrator did not take an academic route. He became involved in liberal politics at the end of the Three Year War in 1861 and was the first caricaturist for the biweekly newspaper review La Orquesta, which he founded that year with Carlos Alejandro Casarín, who used the pseudonym Roberto Macario in honor of the Honoré Daumier character Robert Macaire (a flattering swindler). Escalante chose to address local problems in his illustrations and both recorded and influenced the implementation of the liberal ideology and the strict enforcement of the ...