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Kenneth M. Adams
Juan Duran
about 1933–34
oil
40 1/8 x 30 1/8 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Transfer from the U.S. Department of Labor



It is no accident that this dignified and monumental depiction of an Hispanic laborer was made during the worst years of the Depression. Brilliantly lighted as a muscular mass of thick strokes of bright paint, Duran seems almost to be sculpted rather than painted. Adams, inspired by a variety of modernist styles, was the youngest member of the Taos Society of Artists. He arrived in Taos in 1924 and joined the Society in 1926, just one year before it disbanded.