Details

Title

Thunder Bolt Pattson Rassler

Artist/Maker

Nellie Mae Rowe (American, 1900–1982)

Date

1968–1982

Medium

Crayon and pencil on paper

Dimensions

11 x 8 1/2 inches

Credit

Gift of Judith Alexander

Accession #

2003.225

On View

Currently not on view

Although Rowe associated art making with childhood, some of her themes were soundly adult. She created several works depicting her favorite athlete, Claude “Thunderbolt” Patterson, and other wrestlers. In one of her wrestling portraits, Patterson shows off his figure in a suggestive pose while looking invitingly at the viewer. Patterson is much more subdued in Untitled (Wrestling Ring), but his female companion (thought to be Rowe herself) leans against him coquettishly. Rowe decorates the base of the ring with a large chicken surrounded by eggs—perhaps a suggestion of the artist’s attraction to Patterson and her reproductive wishes.

Image Copyright

© Estate of Nellie Mae Rowe/High Museum of Art, Atlanta.