Reevaluating "Peripheral Sources" : The Impact of David Alfaro Siqueiros and José Clemente Orozco on Jackson Pollock (thesis)
In the 2000 biopic titled Pollock starring Ed Harris, a photographic reproduction of José Clemente Orozco's Prometheus is prominently displayed in Jackson Pollock's studio (Figure 1). Harris, who also directed the movie, recognized the significance of Orozco and even David Alfaro Siqueiros as stylistic influences on Jackson Pollock. If, in fact, this connection is a part of the popular consciousness then why has there been limited scholarship on Orozco and Siqueiros as forbearers to Pollock's "American Style Modernism" from the art historical community? It is true that even introductory art history textbooks cite Los Tres Grandes as early sources of inspiration for Pollock. And, Stephen Polcari in his essay Orozco and Pollock : Epic Transformations examines Pollock's internal psychological affinity for Orozco. But, these discussions fall short in garnering the true pervasive nature of the effect of two Mexican muralists upon both Pollock's early as well as his mature works. The traditional notion that Pollock sought inspiration from European Modernists is an undisputable fact. However, with further examination of these so-called "peripheral sources," most notably Orozco and Siqueiros, it is becomes clear that they are central to Pollock's artistic development. [From the Introduction]
Thesis; [FULL-TEXT RESTRICTED TO WASHINGTON AND LEE UNIVERSITY LOGIN]John R. Wuestling is a member of the Class of 2012 of Washington and Lee University.