Cemetery, New Mexico (Marsden Hartley)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Cemetery, New Mexico
ArtistMarsden Hartley
MediumOil on canvas
Dimensions80.3 cm × 99.7 cm (31.6 in × 39.3 in)
LocationMetropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Cemetery, New Mexico is an early 20th century painting by American artist Marsden Hartley. Done in oil on canvas, the painting depicts a cemetery in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico. The work is in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.



In 1918–1919, Marsden Hartley and a group of artists visited the American Southwest.[1] One destination on this trip was the state of New Mexico, specifically the town of Taos, the nearby Taos Pueblo Reservation (which housed a resident group of artists known as the Taos art colony) and Santa Fe. Hartley and his fellow travelers lived in the art colony for 18 months.[1] During this period of habitation, Hartley made a mental note of the area's topography, sky, and a small cemetery nearby. However, he was unable to render the scene into a painting at the time.[2]

While visiting Europe (in a trip from 1923 to 1924), Hartley began painting a series of works he called "recollections".[2] The works Hartley produced in this series were painted from memory, with one such work being Cemetery, New Mexico, a Modernist painting depicting a small cemetery in Taos Pueblo. As noted in the Met's profile of Cemetery, Hartley painted from memory to emulate American artist Albert Pinkham Ryder, who the former admired.[2]


Cemetery itself depicts a cemetery set before a mountain in Taos Pueblo, New Mexico.[2] As noted in the Met's profile of Cemetery, the work exhibits signs of being painted in an exaggerated, abstract, lazy-like way, likely a result of being painted from Hartley's memory.[2]


  1. ^ a b Hole, Heather; Museum, Georgia O'Keeffe (2007). Marsden Hartley and the West: The Search for an American Modernism. Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300121490.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Cemetery, New Mexico". www.metmuseum.org. Retrieved 2019-07-26.