CHRONOLOGY


1871

Born November 12 in Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico to Jacobo Ramos and Luisa Martinez.

1880-1881

Paints portrait of the Governor of Nuevo León and wins 1st prize in a contest / exhibition in San Antonio, Texas which includes a scholarship to the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes (ENBA), Mexico City.


1890

Begins his studies at the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes (ENBA), Mexico City, where he studies for the next eight years, excelling as a watercolorist and winning numerous awards in this medium.

1898

Participates in the XXIII Exhibition of the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes with sixteen watercolors.

1891

Participates in the XXII National Exhibition of Fine Arts with six drawings.

Receives a gold medal for a pencil drawing in XXIX Competition of the State of Aguascalientes.

1899

Selected to produce painted menus for a state dinner given by President Porfirio Díaz, in honor of Mrs. Phoebe Apperson Hearst (mother of William Randolph Hearst). Mrs. Hearst is so impressed that she asks to meet the young painter and subsequently offers to send him to study in Paris, providing him with an allowance of 500 francs a month.

1897

Applies for a government grant to continue his studies in Europe.


1900

Leaves for Europe and takes up residence in Paris.

Meets the Nicaraguan poet, Rubén Darío, the founder of Modernismo, marking the beginning of an influential friendship. Darío shares lodging with Ramos Martinez and with the Mexican poet, Amado Nervo. Through Darío, Ramos meets poets and artists, among them the poet Paul Verlaine and the painters Claude Monet and Joaquín Sorolla.

1906

Wins first prize at the Salon d'Automne in Paris for his painting, Le Printemps. Ends financial dependence on Phoebe Hearst as he becomes a self­-supporting, commissioned portrait painter.

Works on the murals at Scripps College, Claremont, California, 1946.

1902- 1903

Travels with Darío to the Low Countries and Palma de Mallorca, visiting museums and meeting Spanish writers and poets.

1907

Shows three works at the Salon d'Automne.

Paints monumental mural, La Primavera.

Rubén Darío publishes "A un pintor," a poem dedicated to Alfredo Ramos Martinez in El Canto Errante (1907).

1905

Exhibits two paintings, Paisaje de las Islas Baleares (Landscape of the Balearic Isles) and Barcos en Holanda (Boats in Holland), in the Salon d'Automne in Paris. Paints Le Printemps.

Ramos Martinez (far right) at the Exhibition of the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes

Ramos Martinez (far right) at the Exhibition of the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes


1910

Returns to Mexico.

Exhibits works produced in Europe at the Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes.

Participates in the exhibition organized to celebrate the Centenary of Mexican Independence, held at the Escuela Nacional.

1913

Significant changes in the government lead to Martinez's appointment as Director of the Academia Nacional de Bellas Artes, Mexico City.

On the 17th of October, begins the first Open Air School of Art with ten boys, including David Alfaro Siqueiros, at Santa Anita Ixtapalapa on the outskirts of Mexico City.

Recognized as a member of the Salon d'Automne of Paris.

1911

A strike by the ENBA students favors their demands, and Ramos Martinez is appointed Assistant Director of the School.

1914

Organizes the first exhibition of works by the students of the Santa Anita School.

Removed as Director of the Academy due to personnel changes within the administration. The Santa Anita Open Air School is closed.

1912

The Escuela Nacional de Bellas Artes' name is changed to la Academia Nacional de Bellas Artes.

1916

Establishes a studio on Madero Street.


The Open Air School

The Open Air School

Ramos Martinez (seated center) with a group of unidentified men, 1922.

Ramos Martinez (seated center) with a group of unidentified men, 1922.


1920

Renamed the Director of the Academy by José Vasconcelos, Minister of Education. Creates a new Open Air School in Chimalistac.

1926

Organizes an exhibition of works, under the sponsorship of President Plutarco Elías Calles, by the students of the Open Air Schools that travels Europe, visiting such cultural capitals as Paris, Madrid and Berlin.

1923

Awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Leopold by King Albert of Belgium in recognition of his contributions to the visual arts.

1927

The Academics challenge the methodology of the Open Air Schools.

Exhibits works by the students of the Open Air Schools in Boston, Massachusetts.

New Centers open based on the teaching methods of the Open Air Schools.

1924

Moves the Open Air School at Coyoacan to Churubusco.

1928

Marries Maria Sodi Romero of Oaxaca.

Questions are raised regarding the Open Air Schools' pedagogical approach to art, and a protest is held by the ¡30! ¡30! Contingent of The Revolutionary Artists of Mexico against the Open Air Schools' teaching methods.

Resigns as Director of the Academy and becomes director of the Open Air School in Coyoacan.

1925

Founds three new schools in Xochimilco, Tlalpan, and Guadalupe Hidalgo.

Exhibits works by the students of the Open Air School at the Academy Palacio de Minería (Mexico City) and at the First Pan-­American Exposition in Los Angeles, California.

1929

Paints a commission (Las Flores Mexicanas) for President Emilio Portes Gil as a wedding gift for Charles Lindbergh and Anne Morrow, the daughter of the U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, Dwight Morrow.

Daughter Maria is born and suffers from a crippling bone disease. Travels to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota for consultation on daughter's condition. It is recommended that she be moved to a warm, dry climate. The family moves to Los Angeles and Maria is put under the care of Dr. John A. Wilson.

Commissioned by boxer / entrepreneur Jack Dempsey to paint mural and create interior design for Hotel Playa Ensenada (Ensenada, Baja California).


La Guelaguetza, 1933 Mural commissioned by Jo Swerling for his home in Beverly Hills.

La Guelaguetza, 1933 Mural commissioned by Jo Swerling for his home in Beverly Hills.

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1930

Invited by William Alanson Bryan, the Director of the Los Angeles County Museum, to organize a solo exhibition.

1936

Solo show at Vista del Arroyo Gallery, Pasadena.

Creates fresco at the Chapman Park Hotel, Los Angeles (now destroyed).

1931

Solo show at Barker Brothers, during the citywide Artists Fiesta, Los Angeles.

Exhibits at the Assistance League Gallery, Hollywood.

Exhibits at the Fine Arts Gallery, San Diego.

Paints frescoes for Yucca Loma Ranch in Apple Valley near Victorville, California.

1937

Creates fresco at the Chapel of Mary, Star of the Sea in La Jolla, California.

Creates mural at La Avenida Café, in Coronado, California (now on display at the Coronado Public Library).

1932

Exhibits in the 1st Annual Exhibition of Western Watercolor Painters.

Exhibits at the Fine Arts Gallery, San Diego.

Illustration, Pieta, in Art Digest, August 1932.

1938

Exhibits at the California Art Club, Los Angeles County.

Exhibits in the Los Angeles County Museum Painters and Sculptors Show.

1933

Illustrates two books for Antonio Fierro Blanco (Walter Nordhoff) "Journey of the Flame" and "Rico, Bandit and Dictator."

Commissioned to paint a mural, The Guelaguetza, at the home of Jo Swerling, Hollywood screenwriter (currently in private collection, Santa Paula, California). This commission brings the artist additional work from other celebrities, including Edith Head and Beulah Bondi.

Exhibits drawings, temperas, oils and mural displays at the Palace of the Legion of Honor, San Francisco.

Through the intervention of painter / muralist Hugo Ballin, holds a solo exhibition drawn from the same works at the Santa Monica Public Library. Exhibits Los primeros indíginas de América (The First Indians of America).

1938­
1939

Exhibits at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).

Exhibits at the San Francisco Museum of Art.

Ramos Martinez and wife, Maria Sodi de Ramos Martinez with unidentified guests in front of  Los Guardianes , 1934.

Ramos Martinez and wife, Maria Sodi de Ramos Martinez with unidentified guests in front of Los Guardianes, 1934.

1934

Mrs. George Washington Smith, widow of the famous Santa Barbara architect, in conjunction with violinist / composer / ethnomusicologist Henry Eichheim commissions the artist to paint an important set of murals for the chapel of the Santa Barbara Cemetery in Santa Barbara, California.

Commissioned to paint a fresco, Los Guardianes, for the Henry Eichheim home, Montecito, California.

Commissioned to paint a fresco, Madonna and Child, for Mrs. George Washington Smith's home, La Casa de la Madonna, in Montecito, California.

Included in an exhibition at the Foundation of Western Art, Paintings by California Modernists.

Exhibits at the Faulkner Art Gallery, Santa Barbara.

1939

Exhibits at the Los Angeles County Fair in Pomona, California.

Exhibits in the Golden Gate International Exposition in San Francisco, California.

Exhibits in the 11th Annual Exhibition of Southern California Art at the Fine Art Society of San Diego.

Solo show at the Assistance League Gallery in Hollywood, California.

1935

Exhibits Friars and Nuns (chalk on paper) in the California­ Pacific International Exposition in San Diego.


Alfredo ramos Martinez painting in the Chapel of the Santa Barbara Cemetery, 1934

Alfredo ramos Martinez painting in the Chapel of the Santa Barbara Cemetery, 1934

Ramos Martinez ca 1936.

Ramos Martinez ca 1936.

Alfredo ramos Martinez painting in the Chapel of the Santa Barbara Cemetery, 1934

Alfredo ramos Martinez painting in the Chapel of the Santa Barbara Cemetery, 1934


1940

Invited to teach the summer session at the Fine Arts Gallery, San Diego.

1942-
1945

Returns to Mexico for a visit and is commissioned by the Minister of Education to paint a series of murals at the Normal School for Teachers, Mexico City, on the theme of Monte Albán (now destroyed).

Paints a fresco at the home of his nephew, Eugenio Ramos Bilderbeck.

1941

Exhibits at the Los Angeles County Fair in Pomona, California.

1945

Returns to Los Angeles in September.

Opens solo exhibition at Dalzell Hatfield Galleries, "Ramos Martinez: Paintings of Mexico," held from March 20 to April 14, 1945.

Begins design for stained glass windows for St. Johns Catholic Church in downtown Los Angeles.

Begins 100­ foot mural in the Margaret Fowler Memorial Garden for Scripps College (Claremont, California) under the sponsorship of Millard Sheets.

1944

Exhibits murals on cardboard, oils and temperas, all with the Mexican peasant as subject, at Raymond and Raymond Galleries, Los Angeles.

1946

Solo show at Lillenfeld Gallery, New York City.

Passes away on November 8th at the age of 73 in Los Angeles and is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery.


Ramos Martinez ca 1931

Ramos Martinez ca 1931

Alfredo Ramos Martinez with his wife, Maria Sodi de Ramos Martinez, and daughter, Maria.

Alfredo Ramos Martinez with his wife, Maria Sodi de Ramos Martinez, and daughter, Maria.

Alfredo Ramos Martinez in Los Angeles, 1941. in the background, a drawing for the unexecuted mural, Los Charros del Pueblo.

Alfredo Ramos Martinez in Los Angeles, 1941.
in the background, a drawing for the unexecuted mural, Los Charros del Pueblo.


1951-1952

Memorial exhibition, "Alfredo Ramos Martinez: Memorial Exhibition", at Dalzell Hatfield Galleries from December 10, 1951 to January 10, 1952.

1953

Solo exhibition, "An Exhibition of Paintings by Alfredo Ramos Martinez (1872-1946)," at the Los Angeles City College from April 15 to May 1, 1953.

1956

Retrospective exhibition at Scripps College (Claremont, California).


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1965

Exhibition of works drawn from the Open Air Schools, including works by Alfredo Ramos Martinez, at the Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City.

1969

The Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes organizes an exhibition, "An Homage to Alfredo Ramos Martinez (1875-1946)", in the Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City.


Shelly Horton and Ramos Martinez working on the Flower Vendors mural at Scripps College, 1946.

Shelly Horton and Ramos Martinez working on the Flower Vendors mural at Scripps College, 1946.

Ramos Martinez working on the “Flower Vendors” murals at Scripps College, 1946

Ramos Martinez working on the “Flower Vendors” murals at Scripps College, 1946

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1975

Exhibition at Dalzell Hatfield Galleries, "Alfredo Ramos Martinez: A 'Treasure Trove' Exhibition", from October 14 to November 8, 1975.


1981

Exhibition, "Homage to the Open Air Schools", includes works by Ramos Martinez in the galleries of the Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City.

1985

On May 7, the artist's wife, Maria Sodi de Ramos Martinez, dies and is buried at Holy Cross Cemetery.


1991

Retrospective exhibition at Louis Stern Galleries (Beverly Hills, California). Exhibition accompanied by a full­-color catalogue with essays in English and Spanish.

1996- 1997

Commemorative exhibition at the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Monterrey (MARCO), Mexico, "Un homenaje a Alfredo Ramos Martinez". Accompanied by a full­-color catalogue and texts.

1992

Major retrospective at the Museo Nacional de Arte (MUNAL), Mexico City, "Alfredo Ramos Martinez: Una Visión Retrospectiva (1871-1946)". Retrospective accompanied by full­-color catalogue and texts.

1997- 1998

Solo exhibition at Louis Stern Fine Arts (West Hollywood, California), "Alfredo Ramos Martinez: The California Years," from November 1, 1997 to January 3, 1998.


2008

Exhibition at Museum Estudio Diego Rivera, Mexico City.