Mexican artist Diego Rivera’s story is as rich and vibrant as his artwork. The man known for his large-scale murals told stories through his paintbrush. Today, Google honors Rivera’s 125th birthday anniversary with a Doodle on the search engine’s homepage.
Elements of Rivera’s original work are displayed with care in the Doodle. The figures shown are drawn from some of his iconic paintings like “The Flower Carrier” and “Mother and Child Sleeping.” A man shown painting while standing on scaffolding is meant to depict Rivera at work. The great detail exemplified in this Doodle proves that the memory and appreciation of Rivera’s work are still intact.
Rivera was born in 1886 in Guanajuato, Mexico and began drawing on the walls in his house before his parents set up a studio for him. By 1907, he had earned a scholarship to study in Spain and was heavily influenced by Cubist art in France. Over time, as an artist in Paris, he was encouraged to focus on his mural paintings. When he returned to Mexico, he helped revive muralism in Mexico and throughout the world. At 22, Rivera joined forces with Mexican artist Frida Kahlo by getting married.
Parts of his life have been depicted in film in the Oscar-nominated Frida and in Cradle Will Rock. Alfred Molina and Ruben Blades, respectively, portrayed him in those films.
Rivera’s art reached New York City’s Rockefeller Center (which was reportedly destroyed for being Communist-influenced) and Detroit, Michigan with a mural entitled “Detroit Industry.” That piece remains a cherished work of art there.
Though he died in 1957 at the age of 70, his reach to younger generations continues and his legacy lives on, especially in this new digital depiction of his work on Google. As a revolutionary in Hispanic art, Rivera once said, “Art is the universal language and it belongs to all Mankind.” His masterpieces speak to that statement without saying a word.