October 6 -
Cruzando El Rio Bravo [Border Crossing], 1989
Painted fiberglass, edition 2/5
Gift of Jeanne and Michael Klein, 2012
The Blanton recently added two important works to its permanent collection by sculptor and distinguished University of Texas alumnus, Luis Jiménez. Progress II recently underwent comprehensive restoration and was placed on view at the museum in the second floor collection galleries earlier this fall. Now Border Crossing, has just been installed on the museum’s mezzanine. The two vibrant and monumental works expand the Blanton’s collection of contemporary sculpture, art of the American West, and works by Mexican-American artists, and complement other works by Jiménez in the museum’s collection.
Progress II, a massive sculpture cast in fiberglass and finished with car paint, belongs to the artist’s 1976 series that critically examines mythologies of the West. Rectifying traditional cowboy imagery, the work features a Mexican vaquero — the original cowboy — closing in on his prey: a snarling, red-eyed longhorn hopelessly attempting to evade defeat.
Border Crossing, 1989, also made of polychrome fiberglass, illustrates an act of emigration. Totem-like in stature, the sculpture depicts a man carrying a woman clutching an infant on his back as he crosses the Rio Grande River in search of a better life.