Encyclopedia of American Folk Art

By Gerard C.Wertkin; Lee Kogan | Go to book overview

R

RADOSLOVICH, MATTEO (1882-1972)

created an environment filled with sculptures he produced in his backyard in West New York, New Jersey. He was born in the town of Lussinpiccolo, on the small island of Lussin in the Adriatic Sea that became a part of the former Yugoslavia. His father and uncle were builders of small boats and Radoslovich learned ship carpentry from them. In 1914 at the outbreak of World War I, he immigrated to the United States. With his skills he readily found a job at the Todd Shipyards in Hoboken, New Jersey. He worked there until his retirement at age sixty-five in 1947.

Like so many folk artists, he began his creative career upon his retirement. He built a lively environment in his 20-by-40 foot backyard. Radoslovich worked on his outdoor sculpture garden for the remaining twenty-five years of his life. He began by making wind driven whirligigs using propellers. His first painted wood sculptures were of a man chopping wood and a woman washing. He went on to make clowns, birds, dancing girls, a man riding a pig, and dogs that chased each other. He intended that the backyard be experienced as an overall carnival. With the wind blowing there was an exciting sense of color and motion. He used wood, metal, glass, cloth, and other found objects to make his sculptures. Over the years he kept his environment repaired and painted. Little was written about his creation and he was relatively unknown. There were thirty-nine objects in the garden when he died. Most were acquired by Leo and Dorothy Rabkin, noted folk art collectors, who donated them to the American Folk Art Museum.

See also American Folk Art Museum; Environments, Folk; Sculpture, Folk; Whirligigs.


BIBLIOGRAPHY
Museum of American Folk Art. A Time to Reap: Late Blooming Folk Artists. South Orange, N.J., 1985.
Rosenak, Chuck, and Jan Rosenak. Museum of American Folk Art Encydopedia of Twentieth-Century American Folk Art and Artists. New York, 1990.

JOHN HOOD


RAMÍREZ, MARTÍN (1895-1963)

was a Mexican-born laborer who stopped talking in 1915 and was found homeless in Los Angeles, California, fifteen years later. Subsequently, he was diagnosed as "paranoid schizophrenic, deteriorated" by the staff of the DeWitt state mental hospital in Auburn, California, and was committed to that hospital for the rest of his life. He began to make drawings in 1948, and from then until about 1960 he produced more than 300 works. These were saved by Dr. Tarmo Pasto, an artist and psychologist who taught abnormal psychology at Sacramento State University and used Ramírez's drawings as teaching aids. Through the artist Jim Nutt, who mounted the first exhibition of Ramírez's work at the university's art gallery, the drawings entered the art market in 1973.

Ramírez's works are often impressive in size and always impressive in scale. He preferred to work in pencil, colored pencil, crayons, and occasionally tempera, on scraps of paper that he glued together using potato or wheat starch and saliva to create large, irregular sheets measuring up to 110 inches in one dimension. Some of his works combine drawing with collages of pictures from magazines that, along with Mexican folk art and religious art, are among the more readily identifiable sources of his work. His masked deer, fantastic architectural spaces, and undulating topography are sometimes held to illustrate Jung's theory of "archetypal" images, showing the intuitive ability of certain self-taught artists to tap the iconography that many cultures share. Other viewers have compared Ramírez's work to art it is unlikely he ever saw, or have inquired earnestly into the psychological underpinnings of his art. But Ramírez's art does not yield easily to analysis. His iconography can

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Encyclopedia of American Folk Art
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • List of Entries vii
  • Introduction xxvii
  • A 1
  • B 35
  • Bibliography 75
  • C 79
  • Bibliography 107
  • Bibliography 111
  • D 113
  • Bibliography 144
  • E 145
  • Bibliography 153
  • F 161
  • Bibliography 166
  • Bibliography 171
  • G 189
  • Bibliography 203
  • Bibliography 210
  • H 217
  • Bibliography 225
  • Bibliography 235
  • I 247
  • Bibliography 249
  • J 251
  • K 269
  • Bibliography 273
  • L 279
  • M 293
  • Bibliography 309
  • Bibliography 311
  • N 337
  • O 349
  • P 355
  • Bibliography 388
  • Q 411
  • R 421
  • Bibliography 433
  • S 447
  • Bibliography 450
  • Bibliography 472
  • Bibliography 484
  • Bibliography 490
  • Bibliography 494
  • Bibliography 496
  • T 509
  • U 527
  • V 529
  • W 539
  • Bibliography 540
  • Bibliography 546
  • Bibliography 556
  • Y 561
  • Index 569
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