Elaine de Kooning, Juarez

Elaine DeKooning, Juarez, 1959

Elaine de Kooning
1918 Brooklyn, New York – 1989 Southampton, New York
oil on canvas
56 ½ x 80 ¼ in.
Albuquerque Museum, museum purchase, 2005 General Obligation Bonds, PC2008.39.1
photo by David Nufer

Elaine de Kooning brought her bold New York sensibility to Albuquerque when she taught painting at the University of New Mexico in 1958–59. De Kooning saw a bullfight on a trip to Juárez with Albuquerque writer Margaret Randall and translated the experience into a series of large, abstract canvases. If read metaphorically, this series of paintings embodies the energy traditionally associated with bulls: strength, ferocity, masculinity.