Diego Rivera Prints

Diego Rivera Prints

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Baile En Tehauntepec
Flower Festival-: Feast of Santa Anita Flower Festival

Dos Ninos
Dos Ninos

Muchacho Mexicano
Muchacho Mexicano

Understanding a Masterpiece: Feast of Santa Anita Flower Festival

Everywhere he looked, Diego Rivera saw potential masterpieces. This is in accordance with what the famed Mexican master of the fresco would say after he returned from an extended European stay.

Diego Rivera often spoke of his love and passion for the common folk and his strong sense of nationalism for his homeland, Mexico. The surging crowds that would pack the marketplaces of his youth, and the brightly-colored dresses of the women and young girls carrying flowers, impressed and inspired him. The obvious concern that Rivera expressed for his fellow countrymen ran as deep as the colors he used in his paintings. To understand the artist is to understand his masterpiece Flower Festival: Feast of Santa Anita.

Powerful Colors - Unified Message
Diego Rivera painted The Flower Festival: Feast of Santa Anita in 1931 as a tribute to the Mexican religious, traditional celebration of Santa Anita Canal. The artist did not only depict the religious aspect of the Catholic Feast Day, but also included his subtle sentiment with regard to the plight of the Mexican working agricultural class. His beautiful rendition of the many snow-white calla lilies being carried by the priest, the huge bundles of red flowers held by three figures, and the young women in a kneeling position signify Rivera’s intense religious belief in Catholicism and his compassion for the laborers of his country.

A Unique Art Style
Throughout his artistic career, Rivera sought to develop an art with a national identity, one that would serve the Mexican people. The figures and flowers in Flower Festival: Feast of Santa Anita are tightly juxtapositioned and take up the entire space on the canvas, suggesting unity, a sense of endless bounty and an appreciation for those who harvest such beauty. The stylized facial features of the background figures reflect Rivera’s fascination with pre-Columbian sculpture, of which he was an avid collector. The mural’s bold colors leap off the canvas in fantastic, well-defined order, perhaps intended to contrast with the political disorder of the country at that time. Rivera often lamented the stiffness and indifference of the upper-society toward the common folk.

Mexican Nationalism
In Flower Festival: Feast of Santa Anita, Diego Rivera celebrates his fondness for Mexican traditions and agricultural life in a brilliant display of not only color but also historical reference. Not one to hide his views, personal or political, Rivera combines his spirituality with the cultural attitudes that shaped his life. The message that reverberates from Flower Festival: Feast of Santa Anita is one that proudly speaks of Rivera’s passion for his Mexican Latino heritage. Neither before, nor after, has there been such a loud artistic voice for the plight of the working class of Mexico. Despite his struggles with regard to communistic issues, and the Rockefeller controversial mural project that lent a touch of infamy to his name, Diego Rivera remained right up there with some of the greatest artists of the modernistic era.



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