Lot 43
  • 43

Milton Avery 1885 - 1965

400,000 - 600,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • Milton Avery
  • Mexican Washerwomen
  • signed Milton Avery and dated 1946 (lower right); also signed, titled, dated and inscribed Mexican Washerwomen/by/Milton Avery/28 by 36/1946 on the reverse
  • oil on canvas
  • 28 1/8 by 36 1/8 inches
  • (71.4 by 91.8 cm)


Milton Avery Trust
Waddington Galleries, London, 1966 (acquired from the above)
Sold: Christie's, New York, November 11, 1977, lot 8


London, Waddington Galleries, Middle Period Paintings of Milton Avery, September-October 1967

Catalogue Note

Mexican Washerwomen was executed in 1946 shortly after the artist and his family returned from a three month trip to Mexico. This trip had a significant impact on Avery, inspiring a series of paintings that focused on the role of women outside of the home and further explored his interest in juxtaposing bold colors. In the present work, Avery depicts two female figures washing clothes in a river set against the backdrop of a desert landscape. He flattens and simplifies the hills and the sky, but maintains the figurative forms of the women in order to sufficiently convey the narrative of the scene. As seen in many of Avery’s pictures from this time, he experiments with contrasting colors by placing geometric forms of blue, pink and orange on top of a muted, less spatially defined background. The bright hues reflect Avery’s desire to capture the mood of the distinctive landscape and vibrant culture he found in Mexico.