“I became an artist because of nature.” For more than seven decades Luchita Hurtado has cultivated a multi-faceted art practice that is firmly grounded in a fundamental kinship with nature and the belief that the natural world, as we experience it, is merely given to us on loan. An exhibition that focuses on the artist’s prolific output between the 1940s and 1950s reveals her restless experimentation with materials and style. A decade-long stay in Mexico and a subsequent move to New Mexico, ignited a desire to visualize the spiritual and mystical connection to nature and land. From the beginning Hurtado surrounded herself with artists, writers, and intellectuals whose working methods and philosophies she readily absorbed. Her second and third husband were the artists Wolfgang Paalen and Lee Mullican respectively, and her friendship circle included renowned artists such as Agnes Martin, Isamu Noguchi, Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Wilfredo Lam, Man Ray, and Rufino Tamayo. Hurtado’s abstracted flora as well as her melancholic figurative landscapes veer strongly into the Surrealist realm where moody color schemata play host to dreamlike figurations, biomorphic compositions, and sketch-like primitive drawings. They are extraordinary explorations into the interrelationship between man and nature and are the benchmark of a well-deserved, if belated, recognition of an astonishing art trajectory. At Hauser & Wirth through April 6.