The murals of Diego Rivera come to life


~ Pan American Unity 1940 ~ City College of San Fransisco Click pic to enlarge.

This semester I have been taking a Chicano Studies class on modern Mexican art and muralism at ELAC. It is only after taking in soo much information about the art that preceded the work Diego, Orozco and Siquieros accomplished, that I am able to see how things were back then and the tremendous influence they’ve had on artist today Chicano or not. Knowing that the foundation for their work was layed out by artist such as Jose Maria Velasco and Jose Maria Obregon using the European style to show a sort of reimagining of how things might have been during precolonial times. This type of indigenismo continued on to the 19th century and peaked during the Mexican revolution when shit was going down. It wasn’t until the dust settled from the war that Diego returned to Mexico from Europe to do his thing.

With that being said, I cannot wait to see what his murals will look like when they’re projected to life size proportions Saturday at the Ford Amphitheatre. At the same time former Director of the Museum of Latin American Art, Gregorio Luke will be giving a lecture about Diegos life and his works. I looked it up and he’s being doing these lectures the last few years. There’s no way I’m letting this opportunity pass me up again, especially now that I have a better understanding of the art and Diego. I have a love for murals, which is pretty evident in some of my post, yet i still have soo much more to learn and take in as the history influences the future. The serious is going to start off with Diego then with Rufino Tamayo in July and finish it off with Miguel Covarrubias in August. An interesting fact that I learned in class was that Rosa Covarrubias, Miguels wife, inspired and mentored Frida. Rosa wore the tejuana dress  and influenced Frida and her fashion choices. None the less, this is going to be an amazing experience to see the murals outside of a book or a computer screen.

Click on the link to see a you tube video.

Modesta Avila y otras


This Saturday, I will provide artistic mentorship to a group of Orange County Latina high schoolers who have taken on the ambitious endeavor of creating 3 murals dedicated to 3 important women in California history. The 3 historical figures are Dolores Huerta, Judith Baca and Modesta Avila (pictured above). With the cutbacks in creative arts in California public and private schools, I think it is important to continue to provide training and creative dialogue with students. I feel very privileged to be able to give of my time to such important work. Often I wish there had been such exciting projects to work on in my teen years, then I step back and remember that our time as an artistic movement had only begun to sprout back then.

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Los Juan Diegos

edit-3Beautiful isn’t it ? I was amazed when I first saw it and I’m still amazed every time I see it when I pass by it on Chavez and Lorena. I love art and since I’ve been learning about the artists who helped make Chicano Art what it is today, I have a tremendous appreciation for it. I have great respect for any artist and Chomps is no exemption. Chomps has been working on his this mural called, “Los Juan Diegos” for quite some time. He named it after himself and his brother. Like any artist, he has to make a living some where else to pay the bills and spends what free time and money he has on his art. He ends up borrowing equipment to get the job done a lot.

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WAKO from Breed St. doesn’t realize what he did when he defaced the mural Ernesto has been working so hard to restore. At the risk of getting jumped, FUCK HIM. I’m on my way to school this morning and I see that stupid green paint on the mural, that isn’t even done yet and it’s frustrating to say the least. It’s like a never ending cycle that keeps going all because some idiot banger doesn’t have respect for murals that are older than him. At the same time since ELAC is under construction one mural already got trashed, the olympics mural that could be seen driving by Cesar Chavez Ave. Now there’s talk going around that since our library is going to get remodeled, the mural from the East Los Streetscapers is in danger of getting destroyed. I’ll be damn if I’ll let that happen. Stay tuned for updates.

From White Memorial to Self Help Graphics ~ Murals in Boyle Heights

On January 11 I attended the “Resistance and Respect II” forum on murals in Los Angeles. Having missed out on last years, I made it a point to attend this one and I was not disappointed. From the press release, Panelists include: L.A. mural pioneer and founder of the Social & Public Art Resource Center, muralist/professor Judy Baca; pioneer muralist/painter/professor, Yreina D. Cervántez; muralist/painter Noni Olabisi; co-founder of pioneer mural collective, East Los Streetscapers, painter Wayne Alaníz Healy; godfather of LA Graffiti art Chaz Bojórquez; Graff artist/muralist Man One (Director, Crewest Gallery). The panel will be co-moderated by Elizabeth Morin, Director, Youth Arts & Education Program for the Dept. of Cultural Affairs, L.A. and former teen Graff writer/muralist and renowned poet/author, Luis J. Rodríguez.

These are all great people who I’ve met or heard of before going to the forum, so to be able to hear all of them speak and chime in with the current state of murals in L.A. was a rare treat and opportunity. It was there where I learned about the Siqueiros mural on Olvera St. and where the future of murals in L.A. might go. The discussion got me thinking about some of the murals in Boyle Heights and their conditions. Murals are integral parts of any community and I for one can’t picture a world without them. It’s also part of my Chicano heritage that I’m learn more and more about everyday. I’m currently reading “Diary Of a Brown Buffalo.”  I also realized that during the forum that graffiti is having growing pains because of the wording in city laws that make it a target for politicians who wanna make a name for themselves by going after them.  

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Resurrection of the “Resurrection of the Green Planet” Mural

“No tienen valor” are the words that an older gentleman muttered to Ernesto de la Loza as he was working on restoring his mural on Cesar Chavez Ave. and Breed. For the last few months, idiots tagged up the mural pretty bad and Loza was called up by the store to come and fix it up. I was on my way home from school and I saw him painting.

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