As a young Mexican artist living in the US (currently in Brooklyn, NY), Dulce Pinzon found new inspiration for her photography in feelings of nostalgia, questions of identity, and political and cultural frustrations. In her black and white series “Viviendo en el Gabacho” (a Mexican colloquialism for living in the US) she illustrates the dualistic phenomenon of the integration of the Mexican immigrant into the New York landscape. This concept of dualism was further developed when she used nostalgic iconograpic images from a Mexican card game projected over the naked bodies of her New York friends and loved ones in “Loteria”. ”Multiracial” portrayed subjects of multiracial heritage against primary color backgrounds, exposing the frailty of our concepts of race. “The Real Story of the superheroes” comes full circle to reintroduce the Mexican immigrant in New York in a satirical documentary style featuring ordinary men and women in their work environment donning superhero garb, thus raising questions of both our definition of heroism and our ignorance of and indifference to the workforce that fuels our ever-consuming economy. Below: The artist, Dulce Pinzon photographed by Julieta Cervantes and, Spiderman from the series The Real Story of the Superheroes.
The Real Story of Superheroes will be on view at the Montclair Art Museum in New Jersey through 1/18/08. Stay tuned for Dulce’s latest project “People I Like” - studio portraits of divas, rock stars, party goers, drama queens and artists; all of them Latinos; and, all a part of what she believes to be a breakthrough in the Latino cultural scene of New York City. On top of their already existing alter egos, Dulce is adding universal stereotypes thus creating time-encapsulated portraits.
Cinema Remixed and Reloaded: Black Women Artists and the Moving Image Since 1970 opened on 9/14/07 at The Spelman College Museum of Fine Art in Atlanta, Georgia. The show runs through 12/8/07….Museum Director Andrea Barnwell told Cultureserve, “Early responses to “Cinema Remixed and Reloaded” have simply been incredible. This original exhibition represents the first survey of video works by black women artists. It features works by established artists including Camille Billops, Howardena Pindell, Adrian Piper, Kara Walker and Carrie Mae Weems as well as works by emerging and mid-career artists such as Jessica Ann Peavy, Tracey Rose, Berni Searle, Pamela Sunstrum and Lauren Woods. This exhibition exemplifies the Museum’s mission to focus on works by and about women of the African Diaspora. Part II, which opens on January 24, 2008, will also engage an array of challenging issues and promises to be just as compelling.” Below: Kara Walker, “8 Possible Beginnings: or the Creation of African-America, a Moving Picture by Kara E. Walker” (2005), Courtesy the artist and Sikkema Jenkins & Co., New York.
One area featured in the exhibition is experimental cinema, “Whereas mainstream cinema has always intended to entertain, experimental cinema, in contrast, has always sought to usurp the norm. The goal is often to place the viewer in a more active and more thoughtful relationship to works created in film and video…” (exhibition notes) Click here to: VIEW VIDEO
Fall is upon us, so no more free summer concerts where I can galavant under the sun and lounge to soul satisfying melodies in numerous parks throughout the city. Thus, I have turned my eye to various gallery exhibitions throughout the metropolis known as New York, and beyond. My first stop was the show U Can’t Touch Dis: New Asian Art at Zone: Chelsea Center for the Arts. What can I say, it was refreshing to see some state-side based Asian artists gettin’ up in the mainstream NY art scene. Susan Lee-Chun’s Camouflage (Part II – The Escape) series stood out – for me. Being born in New England around the Boston Brahmins and the Irish Catholics, I cultivated an acute appreciation for plaid, and my “escape”. An experience that was obviously overwhelmingly familiar to Miami based artist Lee-Chun, who explores race, identity and politics with a dash of humor in her work.
The artist Yun Bai, based in LA, informed me of the show which includes her new work, I want a benefactor who doesn’t want to go down my pants #1, an extension of her series of work entitled Porn Flowers. What I find most intriguing about Yun’s journey as an artist is her attempt to re-define the traditional virgin/whore dichotomy through the merging of pornographic imagery and flowers into a unified whole. A process where the flower emerges as the dominant identity, and one that suggests identity lies far beyond the sexual. The show is on view through 10/13/07. Yun Bai’s first Los Angeles solo show is also on view through 10/27/07 at Bert Green Fine Art.
(Images: Copyrighted by Zone: Chelsea Center for the Arts / Lee-Chun artwork Courtesy of artist & Spinello Gallery)
Another NYC exhibition that packed a powerful punch was Adia Millet’s solo show, Blind Premonition, at Mixed Greens. Millet’s construction and installation of miniature houses paired with photographs of the interiors of these same houses forces viewers to question notions of perspective and intimacy. The intense up-close power of the photographs in relation to the tiny intricate an delicate homes constructed by Millet, offers a strong metaphor for the questionable weight and truth of our thoughts and beliefs. The show is on view through 10/6/07.
The Wildstyle show at Dissident Display Gallery in Washington DC, noted on the last issue of Cultureserve, was a smashing success. As promised old school legend Busy Bee came through and dropped some rhymes and Charlie Ahearn, writer, producer and director of Wildstyle, signed books. The diverse crowd was definitely pleased to get some authentic love at home in the nation’s capital. While in DC, I had the chance to go by another one of the handful of progressive galleries in the area, PROJECT 4. On view were some to die for photographs (if you have a science fiction jones or love landscapes) by Paris based artist, Cedric Delsaux. The show entitled Landscapes/Star Wars on Earth showcased some incredible perspective on the terrain that humans inhabit, from beaches to mountains, and digital images that combine C-prints of stark Parisian suburbs and Star Wars figurines. The vastness of space that the work implies, from the literal to the imagined, coupled with a sublimely subtle appreciation of color tonalities, renders a one of a kind viewing experience. The show is on view through 10/20/07. Below: “footbal dans la plaine” by Cedric Delsaux
Last but not least, Marisa E a.k.a. Ritzy P, sent me a link to photos from the 9/13/07 opening of The Sonic Entrance exhibition in Los Angeles. Curated by Gustavo Alberto Garcia Vaca and his wife Alma, the show of P-Funk, Hip Hop, Jazz and Techno artworks featured work by: George Clinton (funk music innovator/artist: Parliament-Funkadelic); Overton Loyd (artist: Parliament-Funkadelic); Hideki Nakajima (art director/designer: code / Ryuichi Sakamoto / stop-rokkasho.org); Man One (graffiti artist: Crewest); Kiyoshi Takami (designer: View From Above); Ritzy Periwinkle (photographer / designer); Sage Cole (artist); Kofie One (graffiti artist: Draftsmen); Marka 27 (graffiti artist: Minigods toys); Brent Rollins (designer: ego trip); Ishiura (designer: TGB design.); B+ (photographer/filmmaker: mochilla, keepintime, brasilintime); Hilda Garcia (visual artist); Naheed Choudhry (photographer: naheedence); Keith Tamashiro (designer: Soap Design); Diana McClure (photographer/writer: Cultureserve); and, Gustavo Alberto Garcia Vaca (artist/writer: chamanvision, Axis, Los Hermanos, Deep Space).
The word femicide gained its re-entry into our recent world culture, through the written activism of Diana Washington Valdez, a veteran award-winning journalist for the El Paso Times in Texas. The first to report on the abductions and brutal murders of hundreds of young Mexican women in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, Washington-Valdez’ relentless exploration has officially awoken us to the fact that 3rd world women’s lives are in serious danger. Mexico’s inability to resolve these murders has encouraged women throughout the world to voice their outrage for the legal impunity towards femicides in their own countries. In 2002, less than 6 years ago, googling words such as “femicide”, “women of Ciudad Juarez”, “border murders”, “NAFTA murders” or “abductions in Chihuahua”, brought no results. The results under these search terms are now substantial, due to the visual, written and performance artists who have vowed to create work on Juarez, until the crimes are resolved. Pictured below: Postcard for ESPEJO: A protest exhibit against Femicides in Guatemala (Santa Ana, CA, May 2007). Curated by Artist Victoria Delgadillo. Exterior Art Installation by Rigo Maldonado with Performer/Poet Gabriela Garcia Medina.
In 2006, Congresswoman Hilda L. Solis of California introduced a resolution into congress condemning the brutal murders in Ciudad Juarez and urging the United States and Mexico to discuss resolution steps as part of their bilateral agenda. The resolution was passed. Following up on work by Grassroots activists such as Guatemalan/American, Lucia Muñoz, founder of Mujeres Iniciando en las Americas (MIA) [dedicated to exposing the femicides in Guatemala], Congresswoman Solis introduced U.S. House Resolution 100 in 2007. This resolution expresses concern over the unsolved murders of more than 2,000 women in Guatemala since 2001 and encourages new efforts to address these crimes and prevent further killings. This resolution also passed.
(Information for this post provided by Victoria Delgadillo)