‘A Rendition of The Brothers Grimm Story’

UTSA student makes artwork series inspired by ‘The Brothers Grimm Story’

Samantha Ysaguirre, Contributor

Kayla Calderon, a junior art major at UTSA, is creating a print collection of storybook-like illustrations following anthropomorphized animals. The collection is meant to take on various symbols of humanity and what it means to be human in all aspects. Calderon shares how her inspiration struck for the series, claiming she was inspired “both stylistically and thematically by “The Brothers Grimm” story and “Town Musicians of Bremen,” which is a group of animals who travel to the titular city in hopes of being viewed as musicians and humans. 

Calderon shares her love for the concept of the outsider’s view and the experiences that make us human — from little things such as our favorite foods to our tastes in music. It is, in fact, one of the main concepts she concentrates on and is conscious of. 

“The subject of humanity, or looking at society from an outsider’s view, has always intrigued me,” Calderon said. “I’m always conscious of the things that make us overtly ‘human’: how we interact, how we have favorite foods or songs, how we experience life and both positive and negative emotions, and how unique that can be for every individual. There was always something extraordinary about that.”

As for the process of putting each composition together, Calderon stays open-minded in her design, ensuring the audience’s unique experiences are felt through the print.

“When making the pieces, I wanted each design to be open-ended to accommodate how unique moments in life may come across to any person,” Calderon said. “For example, when I put the sheep and wolf characters together to represent something like innocence meeting wisdom, one viewer may view such a meeting as positive. In contrast, another may view it as a negative one.”

As an artist, Calderon hopes others come across the series with their own experiences in mind and remember the parts that bring them to life. She states, “Overall, I wanted my pieces to come across as a lighthearted sort of coming-of-age story that can hopefully remind any viewer of their life journeys.” 

As for her first initial interaction with “The Brothers Grimm” story, Calderon shares how the traditional stories were adapted into Disney movies such as Tangled. 

“I heard about them, primarily due to many of their old stories adapting into Disney features, which I grew up loving. ‘Beauty and the Beast was always a favorite of mine, but I also remember loving ‘Mulan,’ ‘Lilo [&] Stitch,’ and ‘Tangled,’ though ‘Tangled’ is the only one based on ‘The Brothers Grimm’ stories out of these,” Calderon said.

“Town Musicians of Bremen,” a song by Pigpen Theatre Co., also inspired Calderon. She explains how throughout her academic career in the arts, her inspiration from the two always stayed, sharing, “The Grimm tales just luckily and coincidentally kept popping up from school assignments to movies to songs for me.”

Calderon’s work is currently unavailable for viewing or sale but is in hopes to be on sale next semester at a stand during the UTSA Printmakers club.