Polo Players, 1946, Lithograph
Riva Helfond (American, 1910 – 2002)
Riva Helfond was an American artist and printmaker who was best known for her social realist works illustrating the lives of working people, such as textile workers and coal miners. Helfond was born in New York City in 1910, and studied art at the School of Industrial Art and the Art Students League. In the 1930s, Helfond taught printmaking at the Harlem Arts Center in New York, and then worked as an artist in the New York Works Progress Administration (WPA), where she printed lithographs, woodcuts, aquatints, collagraphs, and silkscreens. Much of her work addresses topics of labor and the harsh working conditions in Depression-era America.
This 1946 lithograph is animated by three polo players. Unlike much of Helfond’s work, the print represents men engaged in leisure rather than labor.