Diego Rivera and the Detroit Industry Fresco

A Night In The (Open Air) Museum

North Panel of the Fresco

South Panel of the Fresco

Diego Rivera's tie to Detroit is the Detroit Industry Fresco at the Detroit Institute of Arts. Now, in addition to the truly astounding frescos themselves, Rivera was in Detroit from April 1932 to March 1933. This was a man who lived somewhat large, and of course it was the last year of Prohibition in one of the premier booze smuggling centers of the country; he almost has to have left footprints in the city. At the very least he signed one of the beams in the Scarab Club dining room.

One source to look at is the book the DIA published for the 50th anniversary of the frescos; among other things it contained some truly astounding photos of archivists examining the 1:1 scale drawings, which were gargantuan.

Another thing to look into is Pablo Davis, a Detroit artist who assisted Rivera with the frescos.


The Detroit Free Press published a story about Pablo Davis, Detroiter and assistant to Rivera on the frescos, on 10/7/2002, but it isn't available online.

Categories: Arts | Early 20th Century | People | Stub