Diego Rivera Prints

Diego Rivera Prints

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Influential Friends

Diego Rivera honed his craft learning from many different people and colleagues and also established close friendships with several artists. He took with him aspects from each person he encountered to improve and perfect his work. Here you will meet several of those people whom Rivera met, collaborated, and learned from.

Jose Posada:

  • Born February 2, 1852
  • Was working for El Jicote, a newspaper, doing political cartoons
  • Owned a printing shop near San Carlos Academy where Rivera often stopped in to admire his work.
  • Rivera claimed he was his first teacher
  • His engravings and etchings were filled with Calaveras, drawings of skeletons, which he used as a metaphor for a corrupted society.
  • Because of such controversial drawings, he was thrown in jail on numerous occasions. On one such occasion, he met Jose Orozco, an admirer.
  • Posada was an artist who best interpreted the life and social conditions of the Mexican people.
  • Died January 20, 1913. Buried in the Dolores Cemetery in a sixth class grave (lowest category). No one claimed his remains and after seven years, they were thrown out.

Jose Clemente Orozco:

  • Born November 23, 1883
  • After seeing Jose Posada’s engravings, he was inspired himself to do art as a career.
  • Critics said that no artist of his time depicted human conditions with more passion than Orozco.
  • In 1930, he co-created the Labor Union of Technical Workers, Painters, and Sculptors, with Rivera and David Siqueiros.
  • He lived in the United States between 1927 and 1934. His pictures at the time comprised of two themes: the Mexican Revolution and the mechanization and dehumanization of a metropolis life.
  • Along with Rivera and Siqueiros, he formed the Commission of Mural Painting in 1947.
  • Orozco was also involved in political affairs. His last public political act came in June of 1948. He joined Rivera, Frida Kahlo, Siqueiros, and others on the Del Prado Hotel. The purpose of the march was to restore the words “does not exist” to a mural by Rivera, which originally read “God does not exist”.
  • He died September 7, 1949 and is buried in the Rotunda of Illustrious Men in Mexico City.

David Siqueiros:

  • Born December 29, 1896
  • Considered an artistic master of the 20th Century.
  • Heavily involved in political activism
  • Started a weekly called El Machete with Rivera and Javier Guerrero in 1924.
  • Was co-creator of the Labor Union of Technical Workers, Painters, and Sculptors, with Rivera and Orozco in 1930.
  • He was often in jail and was expelled from Mexico in 1932 and returned two years later by President Cárdenas.
  • Siqueiros led an assassination attempt on Leon Trotsky in 1940, but the attempt failed.
  • Formed the Commission of Mural Painting with Rivera and Orozco.
  • He was again jailed in 1959 until 1964
  • He was awarded the Lenin Peace Prize in 1967
  • Died January 6, 1974

George Biddle:

  • Born in 1885, in Philadelphia
  • He was a sculptor, graphic artist, painter, and illustrator.
  • Served two years in World War
  • Went to Mexico to take part in the Mexican Mural Movement.
  • Encouraged his friend Franklin Roosevelt to initiate the Federal Art Project, which employed artists. This later became known as the WPA.
  • Wrote an autobiography called “An American Artist’s Story”
  • Known for his landscapes, soldiers, cities, nudes, clowns and still lifes.
  • Died in 1973.

Pablo O’Higgins:

  • Born March 1, 1904 as Paul O’Higgins.
  • Began studying art in 1922 at the San Diego Art Academy.
  • He was in Mexico from 1924 to 1928, at Rivera’s invitation, who admired his work.
  • Joined the Mexican Communist Party soon after.
  • Took part in the Mexican Muralist Movement.
  • Died in Mexico City while working on a mural for the University of Colima, in 1983.

Isamu Noguchi:

  • Born November 17, 1904 in Los Angeles, but spent his childhood in Japan.
  • Combined materials such as stone, wood, and marble and experimented with new materials.
  • A turning point in his career came in 1926 at a sculpture exhibition of Constantin Brancusi. He became Brancusi’s assistant in Paris.
  • Took part in the Mexican Muralist Movement in Mexico.
  • In 1988, he completed plans to turn a 450 acre dump site into a new park in Sapporo, Japan. The park will be completed in 2004.
  • He died December 12, 1988, in New York.



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