Martin Ramirez at the American Folk Art Museum

The American Folk Art Museum in Manhattan has extended its exhibit of drawings by Martin Ramirez until May 13th. Take this opportunity to check out one of the best museum shows of the season!

From the Museum’s official website:

“Martín Ramírez (1895–1963) created nearly 300 drawings of remarkable visual clarity and expressive power within the confines of DeWitt State Hospital in northern California, where he resided the last 15 years of his life. Ramírez has been codified primarily as a “schizophrenic artist”; this project promises to go beyond the boundaries of Ramírez’s diagnosis of mental illness and consider the artistic quality and merit of his artwork.

To see digital reproductions of works by Ramirez, go here.

The exhibit has also received adulatory reviews in many publications including the New Yorker and New York Times. The Museum’s site provides links to the articles.

Posted by: Ian M.

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One response to “Martin Ramirez at the American Folk Art Museum

  1. Oh my goodness — I was just blown away catching the NPR.com article last night on Ramirez!!! Ironically, I’ve rarely garnered any kind of art understanding or appreciation while growing up as a ghetto kid in cosmopolitan NYC. However, my copious childhood exposures to “great music,” opera and theater arts literally on the poverty streets of Manhattan seems to have made me a latter day mayvin of sorts (not professionally, but culturally and avocationally) right here in conservative Orange County, Calif over a few decades of time. (See my website: www. testsmarts.com, hit prompt on home page: ANN’S CULTURE CORNER.)
    All that shared, take my word that I was literally awestruck, astonished and speechless in catching the brilliant NPR article on Ramirez. I immediately followed up with a fair amount of googling so that I could glean more about this genius artist who, in his iconclastic way created what feels like a wholly new dimension in art for the community while, in effect, spending most of his adult life incarcerated in mental institutions. Like losing Mozart and Bizet while in their 30’s, it’s a tragedy that true awareness of Ramirez’
    was not revealed while in his younger years. QUE LASTIMA!
    I understand his exhibit may be coming to California soon (can you confirm?) and although pretty disabled these days, I will try to get there and see his work in person. Last night, I emailed at least a dozen psychologist friends, physicians and educators I know about Martinez. So far, the four who responded had no awareness that this artist ever existed. At least he left us a substantial body of his works!

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