Artwork of the Week: September 2018 (Week 36)
Maynard Dixon (1875-1946), Keep Moving, 1934, oil on canvas, 30 1/4 x 40 1/8 inches. Brigham Young University Museum of Art, 1937.
In 1934, Maynard Dixon witnessed the San Francisco Maritime Strike of May 9th, when dock workers blocked 2,000 miles of shore. On July 3, violence broke out between police and strikers, causing riots, fist fights, tear gas, and gunshots. Dixon’s anger at the violence inspired him to create a series of strike paintings, including Keep Moving. As in Dixon’s other paintings of this series, the strikers are without identity; their faces are either turned from the viewer, downcast, or shown from behind. In the distance can be seen the police patrols stationed to help keep the peace. The very ordered composition is constructed with intersecting diagonal lines formed by the men filing by, the street curbs, and the geometry of the distant buildings.