Write 2 pages thesis on the topic moma(2012):my review of diego rivera’s exhibition. MOMA: Diego Rivera Murals Diego River was a Mexican mural painter in the early to mid-20th century. Rivera, who was married to famous artist Frida Kahlo, would come to be recognized as one of the contributing members of the Mexican Mural Movement. In 1931 a retrospective of his work was featured at the Museum of Modern Art greatly contributing to his appreciation in the United States. Today much of his work still resides in this museum. While Rivera’s work spans a wide array of subject matter, perhaps his most central area of exploration is the Mexican Revolution. This essay examines Rivera’s work at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) within this context of investigation.
An overarching qualitative examination of Rivera’s mural work demonstrates a central concern with events of oppression surrounding the Mexican Revolution. One notable work in this collection is titled ‘Liberation of the Peon’ (“MOMA”). The title refers to peonage, a system of indentured servitude wherein Mexican natives were forced by Spanish conquerors to work the land. This specific image depicts Mexican men freeing a peon who had been roped to a post. While the image certainly assumes dramatic license, one recognizes the power of its symbolic implications in demonstrating the significant plight and struggle of the Mexican people. One recognizes that even in the depiction of the horses is a somber expression that seemingly speaks to the core of Mexican experience.
Another prominent mural in the collection is ‘Agrarian Leader Zapata’ (“MOMA”). This work is a depiction of key Mexican Revolutionary figure Emiliano Zapata. Zapata is today recognized as a key supporter of Mexican agrarian reform. The image itself depicts Zapata standing beside the dead body of an agrarian farmer. Behind him are Mexican farmers holding equipment and bows and arrows, seemingly ready to fight. While the narrative qualities of the picture are powerful, one recognizes that it is perhaps Rivera’s formal articulations that are more impressionable. In these regards, Rivera depicts human figures in a slanted and slightly cubist form. In the historical context of the work this depiction seems to indicate that it is Spanish oppression that has systematically oppressed the very soul and being of the Mexican citizen. Another slightly similar mural is ‘the Uprising’ (“MOMA”). This image depicts the subsequent physical conflict between the Spanish and Mexican workers. This image partially implements a propagandistic element as a woman holding a baby is seen attempting to fend off a Spanish soldier with a sword. Rivera makes explicit the pained and angry expressions of the Mexican, while leaving blank expressions on the faces of the oppressors.
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In conclusion, this essay has examined Diego Rivera’s murals at the Museum of Modern Art. It’s demonstrated that these murals place a great narrative and symbolic emphasis on the events surrounding the Mexican Revolution. In these Rivera implements a variety of formal techniques as a means of demonstrating the Mexican condition. Ultimately, while the murals depict narrative qualities of oppression, it is perhaps Rivera’s greatest artistry that in his process he is able to give direct insight into the soul of the revolution.
“Murals for the museum of modern art.” MOMA. N.p., 2012. Web. 19 Jan 2012.
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