In partnership with the New Mexico Museum of Art, Santa Fe, The Philbrook presents the dynamic and psychologically penetrating watercolor paintings of Cady Wells (1904-1954). This group of more than 25 works—most on loan from the New Mexico Museum of Art collection—features Wells’ uniquely modernist interpretations of Southwestern landforms and cultural-religious traditions.
Born to a traditional, well-to-do New England family, Wells settled in northern New Mexico beginning in 1932. There, his art took on the complex layering of a spirit inspired by music, calligraphy and stained glass, but traumatized by active WWII combat, sexual intolerance, and Atomic bomb experiments at Los Alamos, just 12 miles from where he lived and painted. Such mid-century influences marked his increasingly surrealist style with equal parts rapture and disquietude.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.