Curator’s Travel Journal: In Rufino Tamayo’s Footsteps (2)

Blog Image 244 - Curator's Travel Journal: In Rufino Tamayo's Footsteps (2)

Rufino Tamayo's Mujer en Gries (Woman in Grey). Click on image for larger view. Art © Tamayo Heirs/Mexico/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY

A photograph of Carmen Ramos by Ross Whitaker
E. Carmen Ramos
Former Curator of Latinx Art
April 7, 2016

E. Carmen Ramos, curator of Latino Art at SAAM is currently in Mexico to research her upcoming exhibition on the acclaimed 20th-century Mexican artist Rufino Tamayo's lengthy residence and production in New York City, Tamayo: The New York Years. This is Carmen's second post from Mexico. Stay tuned for more updates from the road. Read all of Carmen's notes from her research trip.

Today, I visited the Museo Nacional de Arte near the main square, or Zócalo, in Mexico City. I went to see Rufino Tamayo's Mujer en Gris (Woman in Grey) from 1931, an early work where he is beginning to process the tenets of European modernism while looking at the proportions of pre-Colombian sculpture. Painted in grey, the faceless nude figure gives the appearance of stone. The orange-colored background also reminds me of pre-Columbian terra cotta pottery. After seeing the painting in reproduction for so long, it was great to see in person.

View works of art by Tamayo in SAAM's collection.

Next stop: the Museo Tamayo.

Recent Posts

Detail of Phoebe Kline. She is sitting in front of orchids and smiling.
Docent Phoebe Kline began at SAAM in 1974 and she's still going strong
A photograph of a woman in front of artwork
More visitors and new exhibitions highlight a season of change.
 Stephanie Stebich, SAAM's Margaret and Terry Stent Direction in the museum's Lincoln Gallery. Photo by Gene Young. 
Stephanie Stebich
The Margaret and Terry Stent Director, Smithsonian American Art Museum and Renwick Gallery
Marian Anderson and symbols that surround her life
William H. Johnson portrayed the singer in multiple paintings, including in his Fighters for Freedom series.