Marisol Escobar

Marisol Escobar

The Family, 1963

wood, metal, graphite, textiles, paint, plaster and other accessories

79 1/2 in. x 63 in. x 73 in.

The Henry Melville Fuller Acquisition Fund

Read Transcript

It’s an old adage that clothes make the man. And, we might add, woman. Take a look at the Mad Men suit and pillbox hat. Mom, Dad, and a vision of the American family are on full display.

Like the Pop artists with whom she was connected, Marisol engages with postwar ideals of

American prosperity. Her art has been described as “painfully real and fantastically absurd.” 

One of refreshing things about Marisol’s approach is the way she probes the art of appearances with found objects and various artistic processes. She combines a discarded baby carriage discovered in the street with carving, casting, painting, and drawing, for example. As we follow these imaginative juxtapositions across the work, we encounter startling details. What are we to make of the babies with adult feet, for instance? Or the mother’s expression?

The work was featured on a 1970 cover of Time in connection with an alarmist article on the state of the American family.