Saturday, February 13, 2021

The Desert (Art) Rat: Maynard Dixon


Maynard Dixon (1875-1946) was a largely self-taught artist specializing in the American West. Born in a the once sleepy town of Fresno, California, he found himself most inspired and at home in the states of New Mexico and Arizona.

 Along the way, he met and married Dorothea Lange, a photographer best known for iconic photos of the families misery during The Great Depression. Her influences showed in some of his works. LIke the downtrodden fellow in the painting below. 

However, most of Dixon's works were about the Native Americans at a time when they were some of the last of a way of life and culture that was fading. (In the first desert photo below, if you look closely, you can see the native people on the rocks)

However, the most famous of Dixon's works were his desert scenes. They are like a prelude to pictorial magazines like "Arizona Highways." (The 3rd image is one Dixon titled, "Home of the Desert Rat.") A description that might also describe the artist.

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