Jackson Pollock


  • Vida Americana: Mexican Muralists Remake American Art, 1925–1945

    Jackson Pollock, Landscape with Steer, c. 1936–37

    Jackson Pollock, Landscape with Steer, c. 1936–37


    Narrator: Jackson Pollock painted Landscape with Steer using an airbrush and automotive lacquer. He would have encountered these approaches while participating in the Experimental Workshop, an artistic collective that Siqueiros established in New York in 1936. Many of the workshop’s activities were overtly political. They made floats for parades, including one that satirized the control of Wall Street over the political process. Another showed an army of workers knocking Hitler out with a spring-loaded boxing glove. Members of the workshop saw a philosophical link between such revolutionary projects and radical formal experimentation. 

    Pollock participated in Siqueiros’s workshop about ten years before he began making the poured paintings that made him famous. But he continued echoing the Mexican artist’s ideas long after they worked together, declaring in 1950 that “each age finds its own technique.” In the 1940s and ‘50s, American artists overwhelmingly moved towards techniques that supported abstraction—but the impact of the Mexican muralists endured. 


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