“The land is my root and my being. Everything I am is the land and I spent 50 years interpreting it in painting and fighting lost causes.”
When John DePuy first moved to Taos, still under the influence of his teacher, Hans Hofmann, his painting was entirely abstract. Over time Hofmann's influence receded, but his advice to paint from nature remained. For DePuy, the influence of New Mexico on his art was "mainly the land" and the inspiration provided by Taos Pueblo Indians' connection with that land.
As stated by David Witt in Taos Moderns, "In DePuy's work, the purely surface qualities of the land are often eclipsed by the land's sheer power. Subtle graduations of color on walls or in the sky or on limitless plains form a shifting, lively backdrop for suns which shimmer and rivers which slide away and mesas which stand dark. DePuy wrote, 'This land speaks of another time sense than our Western-European lineal time.' The land DePuy began painting by the mid-1950s exists within spatial time, where moments do not proceed to any destination but repeat endlessly in the regular cycle of day, years, millennia, always returning, circular rather than linear.”