Diego Rivera Prints

Diego Rivera Prints


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Diego Rivera
Diego Rivera






Frida Kahlo
Frida Kahlo






Mother's Helper
Mother's Helper








Delfina Flores
Delfina Flores

Biography, 1886-1918


On December 8, 1886, Diego Rivera was born in Guanajuato Mexico. At the age of two, before Diego was even able to read, his father set up a studio for him. The family lived in Guanajuato until 1892, when they moved to Mexico City. At the young age of 10, Diego decided he wanted to become an artist. So he began taking evening classes at the Academy of San Carlos in Mexico City. He enrolled in military college at the request of his father. But Diego did not like the strict regimen and after two weeks, in 1898, he attended San Carlos as a full-time student.

At the school’s annual show, he exhibited for the first time with 26 works and became and established painter. But Rivera was unhappy with the new art director at the academy. And so he decided to leave the school where he had been a student for the last six years.

At the time, Diego’s father was an inspector at the National Department of Public Health, which enabled him to travel to many parts of Mexico. On one particular trip, he showed some of his son’s paintings to Teodoro Dehesa, the governor of Vera Cruz. He was very impressed and when he met with Diego, he offered him a scholarship to study in Europe.

Rivera left Mexico and arrived in Barcelona, Spain, to study with the Spanish painter Chicharro, whom he studied with for two years. He sent many of his paintings home to justify his scholarship. Diego said he learned about his country’s art from Jose Posada, a teacher he found himself. Posada owned a small shop near the San Carlos Academy where Diego would often stop and admire his works. But Rivera still felt there was something missing in his art that technical growth could not supply.

He left for Paris where he saw the works of painters who called themselves Cubists. He saw paintings by Picasso, Braque, Derain, and Cezanne. Rivera became a part of the Parisian art world for a decade. During the years of 1913 to 1918, he devoted himself almost entirely to the cubist school of art.

But his paintings only seemed to be enjoyed by the well-educated who could afford to buy them for their homes. Rivera believed that art should be enjoyed by everyone, especially the poor, working class people.

In 1909, through his friend and fellow painter Maria Gutierrez, he met a young Russian painter by the name of Angelina Belhoff. She later became his common law wife for the next twelve years. They traveled Europe together and spent a lot of time in Paris where Diego participated in several exhibitions. During this time, they had many friends who were Russian.

In 1918, Rivera met Elie Faure, which began a lifelong friendship between the two men. Faure reawakened Rivera’s enthusiasm for murals and encouraged him to go to Italy and study the works of the masters. While in Italy, he was exposed to frescoes from hundreds of years earlier. They were often painted on the walls of churches so that everyone in the towns could enjoy and appreciate them. After fourteen years away from Mexico, he left Paris and Angelina Belhoff and returned home and participated in what is known as the Mexican Renaissance.

Jose Vasconcelos, the new minister of public education, initiated a national program which included adding mural art to public buildings. He offered Rivera an indoor wall at the National Preparatory School, part of the University of Mexico. Here, Rivera painted one of his most popular works, Creation.

Biography, Continued - 1922 to 1957
Life with Frida
Diego Rivera Paintings

 

 

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