Title page for ETD etd-04152009-161334

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Katayama, Erika
URN etd-04152009-161334
Title Xavier Gonzalez
Degree Master of Arts (M.A.)
Department Art
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Darius A. Spieth Committee Chair
Justin St. P. Walsh Committee Member
Mark Zucker Committee Member
  • Ethel Edwards
  • Modernism
  • Cubism
  • Regionalism
  • pablo Picasso
  • Xavier Gonzalez
Date of Defense 2009-04-13
Availability unrestricted
This essay analyzes a sampling of Xavier Gonzalezís paintings and murals, and examines the connections between Gonzalez and Pablo Picasso through journals and notes by Gonzalez himself.

Gonzalezís career as an artist spanned decades, during which he explored many different types of media. His watercolors draw upon a Cubist legacy and integrate geometric elements within his realist subject matter. Gonzalezís murals for the New Orleans Lakefront Airport feature sweeping scenes of flight that capture the modern experience. The murals represent the apex of Gonzalezís career as an artist working in public spaces, though they later faded into oblivion as the airport lost its luster. Gonzalezís later paintings from the 1940s and 1950s engage emotionalism and humanism, and operate on multiple levels of meaning.

From Gonzalezís own notes, one can gain insight into how the influences and observations of Pablo Picasso aided him to define his work and his approach to art in general. Both natives of Spain, Picasso and Gonzalez shared an aversion to reading about or critiquing art. Instead, Gonzalez relied on his observations of other artists, such as Picasso and his wife Ethel Edwards.

In lieu of a definitive biography or catalogue raisonnť of Gonzalezís art yet to be written, this essay should serve as starting point for further Gonzalez research to be undertaken in the future.

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