Popocatepetl, Spirited Morning– Mexico

Media - 2004.30.3 - SAAM-2004.30.3_1 - 63294
Copied Marsden Hartley, Popocatepetl, Spirited Morning-- Mexico, 1932, oil on board, 2529 in. (63.573.7 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Sam Rose and Julie Walters, 2004.30.3
Free to use

Artwork Details

Popocatepetl, Spirited Morning– Mexico
2529 in. (63.573.7 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of Sam Rose and Julie Walters
Mediums Description
oil on board
  • Landscape — Mexico
  • Disaster — volcanic eruption
  • Landscape — mountain — Popocateptl
Object Number

Artwork Description

During his visit to Mexico City in 1932, Marsden Hartley was entranced by the two snow-capped volcanoes, Popocatépetl and Ixtaccihuatl, surrounding the city. He devoted much of his time to studying ancient Aztec and Mayan artifacts and primordial myths of creation. According to legend, a Tlaxcaltecas chief promised the hand of his beautiful daughter Iztacc to the brave warrior Popo. Falsely told that her lover had been killed in battle, the girl died from grief. When the young warrior returned, he took her body into the hills and knelt beside her to keep watch. To protect them, the gods covered their forms in eternal snow.