David Alfaro Siqueiros

Mexican 1896-1974



Along with contemporaries Diego Rivera and Jose Clemente, David Alfaro Siqueiros’ vibrant and controversial frescoes have immortalised him as one of the tres grandes of the Mexican mural painting movement which followed the country’s 1910-1920 revolution. Alongside this movement, helping further Mexico’s social and political reform, Siqueiros and similar-thinking artists were also involved in an exciting revival of printmaking—the aim being the development of a non-elitist and uniquely Mexican cultural identity.


Having studied art in Europe with an emphasis on fresco painting in Italy, Siqueiros returned to Mexico. Due to his bold experimentation with different materials, he was soon regarded as the most technically innovative of the country’s top mural artists. The Siqueiros Experimental Workshop, which he ran in New York in 1936 and 1937, was attended by Jackson Pollock, future pioneer of abstract expressionism.


Siqueiros applied the same vibrancy and style of his murals to his prints, reflecting his urgent desire to promote political change. The result of his and his contemporaries’ efforts was a new enthusiasm and flourishing of printmaking in Mexico. Major exhibitions at such venues as the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art further sparked a growing world-wide interest in Mexican art and artists and helped elevate original prints to the same high level of regard given paintings and sculptures.


David Alfaro Siqueiros’ contribution to his country and to art is still celebrated to this day.