Resituating Dorothy Hood in the Art Historical Canon



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Art history's rigidity is being challenged and dismantled in the 21st century. This allows us to reexamine the careers of significant, innovative artists that have been historically overlooked because they did not snugly fit into a certain genre, art movement, or other limiting form of categorization. One such artist is Dorothy Hood (1918-2000). She was a native Texan and a key bridge between the American and Mexican Modern art movements, as well as the genres of Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism. This paper examines the importance of Hoodï¾’s work and the unique challenges she faced in her career, most likely a cause for the lack of scholarship on her work. She was neither bound by geographical location (moving multiple times in her life: from Texas, to New York, to Mexico, then back to Texas) nor artistic movement (dabbling in Surrealism, collages, and large-scale abstract paintings). It was this two-fold fluidity between space and genre that inevitably hindered her from achieving the status of other artists who were more firmly situated in a particular genre or location. It is essential to continue to shed light on less-recognized female artists, like Dorothy Hood, not only because of their continued minority status in the larger scope of art history, but for the innovations they made in their own rights. With this paper, I hope to contribute more to the necessary scholarship on Dorothy Hood, as well as spark further exploration into the Texan art communities of the 20th century, specifically their female artists.



Art History