Diego Rivera has to be one of the greatest artists of all of the early 1900s. I choose Diego Rivera because he is an old folk hero, and because his work has so much meaning behind it that normally you wouldn’t know unless you understood the current events during that time. His wife who also is a painter, Frida Kahlo, also is remarkable as well. Rivera uses conventional painting methods with medium-oil based paints, and is most well known for his murals. Diego lived from 1886-1957; he led an amazing life dedicated to art and his political side of the communist party. After spending the 1910s in Europe, where he surrounded himself with other artists and was strong in the cubist movement, he returned to Mexico and began to paint the big murals for which he is most famous. In his murals, he blends hard issues relating to the working men and women, making his status among the poor and middle class very good. He was invited to create works everywhere, most well-known in the United States, where he stirred up controversy by drawing ‘Lennon’ in one of his murals. Rivera’s most remarkable work sited is his 1932 Detroit Industry, a group of 27 frescos at the Detroit Institute of Art in Michigan. His expression that he uses is the most beautiful I’ve ever seen with his imagery and sense of true reality amongst the different shades and brush strokes. I can actually see the pain and anger in some of the more politcal and social paintings. Diego is noted with some of the greatest artists including Cezanne, Gauguin, Renoir, and Matisse. All who undoubtedly earned there title of true masters of the trade as well. Most of Diego’s paintings are of slaves and the fight for change in Mexican society. The struggle that is viewed is very bold and how detailed Diego can turn something seemingly not as flashy to a prominent foothold in the movement towards revolution. In 1930 Rivera made a few trips that would change the course of American painting. In November of that year, Rivera began working on his first two major American pieces; for the American Stock Exchange Luncheon Club and for the California School of Fine Arts. These two pieces firmly but slowly incorporated Rivera’s crazy politics, while still have a sense of simple history to them as well. One of Rivera’s greatest gifts was his ability to shrink big historical subjects down to revealing them in scenery which inferences hundreds of things that could have been on his mind. For Rivera, the foundation of history could be seen in the working class, whose lives were spent by the war and industry in the name of progress. In the paintings above and of all American murals to follow, Rivera would investigate the struggles of the working class. I can stress enough how much he cared for his people and their future in Mexican culture. It has influenced me in my thinking towards art and the expression that the artists tried to convey. I know now that to understand art as it is, I must begin a sear for the elements I am exposed to and finally formulate a good stance in my reasoning towards the general culture and work of art.
The three murals I have chosen to best represent what i am talking about are, The “la tierra fecunda’’ was painted for the Chapingo National Agriculture School. “The Flower Seller” which was painted directly for his inspiration of how hard the Hispanic peopled slaved to make a living. I had a tie between “man at the crossroads” and the “RCA Building at Rockefeller Center” where a once present mural depicted Lennon but was destroyed. All of these paintings are pure examples of the love and compassion that Diego Rivera had. The most captivating of abstract objects could be intertwined into emotionally powerful political moving paintings that had the meat and potato’s of what was going on in that time era. So to say the least Mr. Rivera in short is in my opinion the most recognizable leaders of motivational art in the world. As he continues to inspire and comfort people through his decades ago works of art. Id have to say id totally have some of Diego’s artwork in my house because I know the history for which it was painted for and knowing that makes me want to appreciate it more. This is why Diego Rivera is my favorite artist.
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