Man Loading Donkey with Firewood

Painted in 1938, this image of a farmer and his donkey is a charming example of Rivera’s many portrayals of rural Mexican life. Without seeing his face, we are free to impose any identity on the hat-wearing farmer – he could by any of the myriad agricultural workers scattered throughout the nation. The forward facing donkey, stacks of wood on his back, faces the viewer, eyes wide and vibrant. Playing with a sense of perspective, Rivera uses a shallow foreground to achieve a sense of closeness and intimacy.

Creator: Diego Rivera

Date: 1938

Original Medium: Oil on canvas

Original Size: 24 1/2 x 19 1/4 in.

Location: Santa Barbara Museum of Art