Download PDF by Gerry Souter: Diego Rivera: His Art and His Passions (Temporis Collection)


By Gerry Souter

"I was once conscious of Diego Rivera, the Mexican muralist, lengthy sooner than I encountered the various different "Diego Riveras" that roamed the realm among the start of the 20 th century and the overdue Fifties. [...] whereas his easel work and drawings represent a wide physique of either his early and past due paintings, his specific work of art explode off partitions in virtuoso performances of mind-staggering business enterprise. On these partitions the guy, his legend and myths, his technical expertise, his severe story-telling concentration and self-indulgent ideological convictions all come together." (Gerry Souter) Gerry Souter, the writer of the amazing Frida Kahlo, overcomes his large admiration for Diego Rivera to offer the artist a human size, present in his political offerings, his amorous affairs and his trust that "this fact was once Mexico, the language of his techniques, the blood in his veins, the azure sky above his resting place."

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Additional resources for Diego Rivera: His Art and His Passions (Temporis Collection)

Sample text

Could he have been thinking of the canvas wall murals of Puvis de Chavannes in the Pantheon rotunda? This meddling with spatial relationships led to other experiments. He and Angelina began trying different media besides linseed oil, looking for tactile solutions. A mix of lemon resin, essence of lavender and beeswax produced a particularly heady parfum graisseux with which to mix their paints. There was a frantic air among the bohemians of Montparnasse as the once stabile world of simple painters, filters of the world around them, became a chaotic repository for the transmogrification of that world.

Two men smoked and swapped pulls from a wicker-wrapped bottle as they spoke in low, guttural Basque. Later, when he set up his easel in the studio of Chicharro y Agüera, his nickname would be “the Mexican”. All he had to do was open his mouth in Madrid and he became the country boy. Diego Rivera hid behind a straggly beard, but he couldn’t hide the soft, frog-like eyes, the sloping shoulders accustomed to stooping so as not to stand out in crowds. He could not hide the sixfoot bulk that supported his large head, which required a wide-brimmed sombrero to shade it because ordinary hats were too small.

Grinning and glad-handing, Rivera watched Doña Carmelita Díaz write a cheque for six of his paintings to be sent to her house and seven more for the president’s palace. The sycophants of the social set elbowed their way into line to follow the example set by Doña Díaz. With his stipend from Don Dehesa secured plus this windfall, Diego had finally realised some significant income from his paintings – even if they did look like other artists’ work. Two days earlier, on November 18th, 1910, only sixty miles from Mexico City, for an entire day the thunder of gunfire had rolled over the dusty hillsides surrounding the equally dusty town of Puebla.

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