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Pariah

1971-1972 Marcos Dimas Born: Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico 1943 oil on canvas 65 x 54 in. (165.1 x 137.2 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Museum purchase through the Luisita L. and Franz H. Denghausen Endowment © 1971-1972, Marcos Dimas 2013.15 Not currently on view


Exhibition Label

The defiant figure in Pariah wears an indigenous amulet and has wavy black hair that suggests African ancestry. Dimas depicted his monumental figure using a range of paintings styles associated with abstract art that flourished in New York during and after the 1950s. He painted Pariah shortly after he cofounded Taller Boricua, an artists’ collective that shaped the cultural dimensions of the Puerto Rican civil rights movement in New York. These artists created works that affirmed the hybrid African and indigenous (or Taino) identity of Puerto Ricans.

Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art, 2013

Keywords

Figure - bust

painting

paint - oil

fabric - canvas