Alfonso Xavier Peña (1903-1964) - Mexican Village Scene - The Stairs - P3119
Oil on board. Measures 10 1/4" x 11 1/8".
Alfonso Javier Peña was born in Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas, Mexico, on January 13, 1902. He was a painter, caricaturist and muralist who was part of the so-called Mexican School of Painting movement, he is recognized for the murals he made in Paris, United States and Mexico.
Alfonso X. Peña grew up in an artistically inclined family; Since he was a child, he showed special interest and mastery in drawing, a faculty that he used at the beginning of his career when he worked as a cartoonist in the newspaper El Mundo de Tampico and years later in the newspapers El Globo and El Universal .
He moved to Mexico City to study at the Old Academy of San Carlos and later continued his training in New York where he traveled in 1922, as he became interested in the galleries and museums of that city, as well as the artistic environment, however he began to paint formally until 1929, when he was 26 years old. Settled in that city, at the end of the 1930s he was part of a group of artists made up of Rufino Tamayo, José Juan Tamayo, Matías Santoyo and Miguel Covarrubias, Adolfo Best Maugard, Luis Hidalgo, Rufino Tamayo, among others; during that time he perfected his drawing technique and his ability to manage colors.
Upon returning to Mexico, he inaugurated his first exhibition with works he did while in New York, thus obtaining quite a success, especially due to the color of his drawings. After spending some years in Mexico, he traveled to Europe for the first time in 1935 and settled in Paris where he did much of his work. In 1937 he attended the International Exposition in Paris in which he made murals for the Mexican and Venezuelan pavilions, work that earned him a gold medal as a muralist, a merit that no other Mexican painter has obtained; He also received another medal, in the company of Pablo Picasso, considered among the best painters in Europe at that time.
Bohemian at heart and possessor of great charisma, upon returning to Mexico he set up his workshop on Calle de Pescaditos , in the capital of the country, where his creative force produced works of enormous value. The workshop soon became a meeting point for countless artists and poets who met there every night.
In 1950, in Mexico, he received the José Clemente Orozco medal , which was awarded to him for a painting that represented the dead Orozco himself and which he titled “The Blank Wall”. In 1957 he left for Europe again, with a scholarship from the Ministry of Public Education, with the purpose of exhibiting his nationalist work in France and Italy and carrying out studies in the restoration of fresco murals, which he did in Florence. He exhibited in Rome and later traveled to Spain, where he also exhibited in the Spanish capital and continued on to France.
Alfonso X. Peña made murals in Paris, Los Angeles (USA), Caracas, Venezuela and in various cities of the Mexican Republic, specifically in Mazatlán, Sinaloa, San Luis Potosí and for the Bella Vista hotel in Cuernavaca, Morelos. Today his work belongs to important collections such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Andrés Blaisten Collection, both in Mexico. Alfonso X. Peña died in 1964.
Bio from the Collecion Blaisten site