The famous Mexican muralist was contracted by Nelson Rockefeller in the 30’s to create a mural for the Rockefeller Center in New York. The masterpiece was not finished because Rivera included Lenin in it, this caused the rejection of the Rockefeller family and they decided to destroy the mural. Some years later Rivera painted the mural again in the second floor of Bellas Artes, Mexico City.
This painting shows two political and social antagonist universes, those that divided humanity at that time: capitalism and communism.
In the left side we can see American history highlights. In the top corner the artist represented soldiers with gas masks, remarking the American participation the first world war.
The end of this war brought prosperity and the YOLO mind set. A lot of changes took place in the 20’s related to mentalitiy, women empowerment and consumerism.
The new conception of capitalism together with the speculation created by the brand new stock market, seen as a way of life, created the big depression of 1929.
This situation left millions of people without a job, living in misery, and created riots against Hoover
However, we can observe the US submerge in a passive period, where the technology and progress conditions appeared. Such as the microscope and the x ray inventions.
Still in this side of the mural, God is represented by an imponent statue without hands, which represents the crisis of capitalists countries experienced in 1929 and the social inequality.
In the other side the artist, Diego Rivera, shows the development of communism in the URSS. Starting with the bolshevik revolution that allowed Lenin to be the leader, represented in the mural with the hands to the work force.
In the comunist side of the mural there is an other statute but in this case it has no head, instead, the work force is sitting over the neck. This image represents the new way of thinking and the repression to the people to have their own thoughts.
Last but not least, we can observe the man in the middle (el hombre en el cruce de caminos) that controls both sides using technology.