Art History from Home: Los Tres Grandes and American Art – Whitney Museum of American Art

Thurs, Jan 7, 2021, 12 pm, Online, via Zoom

The Mexican avant-garde that emerged after the country’s revolution galvanized artists in the United States who were seeking to break free of European aesthetic domination. Many American artists traveled to Mexico, and the leading Mexican muralists—José Clemente Orozco, Diego Rivera, and David Alfaro Siqueiros—spent extended periods of time in the United States, executing murals, paintings, and prints; exhibiting their work; and interacting with local artists. The session will explore the trajectories of influence that these three artists—known as los tres grandes—had in the U.S.

Grant Johnson is a Ph.D. candidate in the department of art history at the University of Southern California and a Joan Tisch Teaching Fellow at the Whitney. His dissertation, Sheila Hicks: Weaving to the World, traces the first critical history of the prolific American artist, weaver, and pioneer of global contemporary art. An active curator, critic, and writer, he has had work appear in ArtforumFriezeThe Brooklyn RailGarage, and Performa, where he was a writer-in-residence from 2012 to 2014.

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Philip Guston, Bombardment, 1937–38. Oil on composition board, diameter: 42 in. (106.7 cm). Philadelphia Museum of Art; gift of Musa and Tom Mayer, 2011-2-1. © The Estate of Philip Guston, courtesy McKee Gallery, New York