Announcements

Califas Legacy Project: January – April 2021

The Califas Legacy Project has unified the Monterey Bay Crescent through public retrospective and multi-generational exhibitions, zoomed in opportunities, streetside art viewing, portable murals, documentary videos, panel discussions, and a Latinx-based symposium.

SEE FULL SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

The Califas Legacy Project grew out of the recognition that our region represents an opportunity to fill in a missing piece of American art history. The story of Chicano/a art on the Central Coast is decades long, rich and varied.  

In 1982, Professor Eduardo Carrillo conceived of the “Califas: Chicano Art and Culture in California” conference to bring together artists, scholars, and creative social instigators to take stock of La Raza y El Movimiendo after several decades of political awakening and action. Together with Philip Brookman, Tomas Ybarra Frausto, and Juventino Esparza, he assembled a remarkable group for a multi-day symposium. They argued and agreed that the Chicano movement in all its variety and manifestations was very much alive and needed continued nurturance. 

Now, almost forty years later, the Califas Legacy Project features the art and ideas of our region’s Chicano/a/x and Latinx creative leaders, our elders in the movement and the next generation artists across the Monterey Bay Crescent.

The nine organizations participating in the Califas Legacy Project
Museo Eduardo Carrillo
Monterey Museum of Art
Moving Parts Press
Santa Cruz Art League
Santa Cruz Public Libraries
Watsonville Public Library
UCSC Mary Porter Sesnon Art Gallery
UCSC Institute of Arts and Sciences
UCSC Library Special Collections & Archives

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Museo Eduardo Carrillo 
TITLE: The Califas Legacy Project 
(online retrospective of Califas Legacy artists with video vignettes and the book, Califas The Ancestral Journey/ El Viaje Ancestral)
DATES: March 5, 2021 ongoing
ADDRESS: museoeduardocarrillo.org and the Google Cultural Institute
CONTACT: Betsy Andersen spark@cruzio.com

Monterey Museum of Art
TITLE: The Califas Legacy Project: The Ancestral Journey/El Viaje Ancestral 
Virtual exhibit of CALIFAS artists, partners, and the book, along with other Moving Parts Press books)
DATES: January 8 – April 11, 2021
ADDRESS: 559 Pacific St, Monterey, CA 93949
CONTACT: Allyson Hitte ahitte@montereyart.org
Programming TBA

Monterey Museum of Art
TITLE: Change = Action/Time: Generational Activism in Chicanx and Latinx Art
(Zoom symposium)
DATES: January 9 (10:00-5:00)
CONTACT: Allyson Hitte ahitte@montereyart.org
ADDRESS: https://montereyart.org/event/symposium/

Santa Cruz Art League
TITLE: The Califas Legacy Project
(Online retrospective of Califas Legacy artists with video vignettes and the book, Califas The Ancestral Journey/ El Viaje Ancestral) with Museo Eduardo Carrillo
DATES: March 5, 2021
ZOOM RECEPTION: March 5, 2021 (5:30-6:30)
ADDRESS: 526 Broadway Ave, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
CONTACT: Valeria Miranda valeria@scal.org
Programming TBA

Santa Cruz Public Libraries
TITLE: Califas: The Ancestral Journey/El Viaje Ancestral 
(Series of banners displayed in street facing windows with the book displayed inside)
DATES: January 8, 2021 ongoing
ADDRESS: 224 Church St, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Contact: Diane Cowen cowend@santacruzpl.org and Susan Nilsson nilssons@santacruzpl.org
Programming TBA

Watsonville Public Library
TITLE: Califas: The Ancestral Journey/El Viaje Ancestral 
(Series of banners displayed in outward facing windows in the City Hall rotunda with the book displayed inside)
DATES: January 8, 2021 ongoing
ADDRESS: 275 Main St, Watsonville, CA 95076
CONTACT: Alicia Martinez alicia.martinez@cityofwatsonville.org
Programming TBA

Mary Porter Sesnon Gallery, UCSC
TITLE: Eduardo Carrillo: Comunidad de Califas
(Virtual exhibition of Eduardo Carrillo monographic retrospective)
DATES: February 3 – April 3, 2021
ZOOM RECEPTION: February 3, 2020 @ 4:00-5:00pm
(Tour of the virtual exhibition hub, website, and a panel discussion) Register here
ADDRESS: https://art.ucsc.edu/sesnon/eduardo-carrillo
CONTACT: Shelby Graham sgraham@ucsc.edu and Louise Leong lleong1@ucsc.edu
Programming: Sesnon website

Institute of the Arts and Sciences and UCSC University Library with Moving Parts Press
TITLE: Rising From the Ashes: The Artistry and Perseverance of Moving Parts Press
(panel moderated by Rachel Nelson, Director, Institute of the Arts and Sciences, UCSC, sponsored by UCSC Special Collections and IAS, featuring Felicia Rice)
DATES: January 28, 2020 (5:00-6:30pm)
ADDRESS: https://ucsc.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_pvl55rODS0CJcG-15MRQsw
CONTACT: Teresa Mora tmora1@ucsc.edu and Felicia Rice frice@movingpartspress.com

Brief description of the event: 
In June 2020, book artist Felicia Rice completed her most recent piece, The Necropolitics of Extraction. Two months later the book, along with Rice’s studio, was destroyed by the wildfires that ravaged the Santa Cruz Mountains. The only extant copies of the work are those that had already found homes in various institutions across the country. Despite this massive loss Rice’s work continues as Moving Parts Press works to rise through the ashes.
 
Rice’s work has always hinged on collaboration and community in order to explore and comment on some of the most tangled issues of our time, from questions surrounding identity to the sustainability of our planet. This event invites a number of her closest collaborators, including UCSC Arts Faculty, T.J. Demos and Jennifer González to join Rice in conversation about her work, the process of collaboration and the impact of the medium of artists’ books. 

We thank the generous sponsors of the Califas Legacy Project

California Arts Council
California Humanities
Arts Council Santa Cruz County
Santa Cruz Arts Commission
Hit and Run Press

Eduardo Carrillo: Comunidad de Califas

Virtual Exhibition at UCSC’s Sesnon Gallery

Dates: Wedneday, February 3 to Saturday April 3, 2021
Location: online  at https://art.ucsc.edu/sesnon/eduardo-carrillo

Zoom Reception: February 3, 2020 @ 4:00-5:00pm | Register Here
The reception will feature a tour of the virtual exhibition hub, website, and a panel discussion with Amalia Mesa-Bains, Philip Brookman, and others.

Contact:  Shelby Graham sgraham@ucsc.edu and Louise Leong lleong1@ucsc.edu
More programming will be presented throughout the exhibition on Sesnon website—for updated exhibition information check the Sesnon Gallery website.

Image credit: Eduardo Carrillo, Las Tres Mujeres de Tepeyac, 1994, Oil on linen, 48” x 54”, Collection of the Art Museum of South Texas, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Keeler

UCSC Oakes College students create Museo exhibit on Google Arts & Culture

As part of a course titled “Building Websites for Social Change, a team of students from UCSC’s Oakes College collaborated to create an exhibit for Museo Eduardo Carrillo on Google’s Arts & Culture Platform. Due to the COVID-19 shutdown of in-person instruction, the class was conducted completely online via Zoom. Thanks to the students Davis O’Shea, Jazmin Sosa Herrera and Kaelen Alexander, and to instructor Vicki Winters! Scroll on to read students’ reflections on working on the exhibit, and view the exhibit itself.

Davis O’Shea:

I am a third year at UC Santa Cruz majoring in the History of Art and Visual Culture. I grew up in between the Bay Area and Nayarit. I am especially interested in visual cultural studies, graphic design and sound design.

My experience working on the Museo Eduardo Carrillo exhibition was thoroughly educational and enlightening. Not only was it an opportunity to learn about how to prepare and curate an exhibition as a team, but it was also an opportunity to work with and learn about local latinx artists such as Eduardo Carrillo, Amalia Mesa Bains, and others. Furthermore, it was really a unique experience learning about this entire process (team meetings, curation) in an online setting and exhibiting on the Google Arts and Culture platform. One personal highlight from the project was creating the collage at the beginning of the exhibition. While creating the collage, I was able to fully engage with the artworks directly and respectfully. As I arranged and cropped the artworks, my eyes latched on to the fine details and I grew to appreciate consistencies shared between the pieces. Many of the artworks tell powerful local and ancestral stories which resonate with the Califas Legacy writings. I hope that viewers can appreciate the details and the stories embedded in these artworks and writings. I also hope to apply the knowledge/skills that I have developed throughout this project (such as curation, research and design) in future professional and personal projects.

Jazmin Sosa Herrera

I am a third-year student double-majoring in Spanish Studies and Politics at UC Santa Cruz. I’m from San Diego, CA, and spend the majority of my time working as a Pre-Law Peer Adviser under the university’s Career Success Center, where I mainly focus on providing students with information regarding the law school application process and advise in professional development.

Working on the Museo Eduardo Carrillo exhibit has been a very rewarding and positive experience. Being able to learn how to create and edit exhibits through Google Arts and Culture was a new experience that I was able to use as a creative outlet for myself. The artwork displayed is very touching so being able to view it and structure how it should be displayed in the exhibit was really honorable. One particular thing I really enjoyed about this project was being able to read the Califas Legacy stories and tying them to some of the artwork. Those stories were very fun and relatable for me to read. Some other things I learned besides how to edit exhibits on Google Arts and Culture were how to convert images. I hope to use these skills in the future with personal projects, as well as the data entry skills I honed through this experience.

 

Califas Legacy Project: Documenting our region’s Chicano/a cultural treasures

The Califas Legacy Project is a multi-year, multi-medium, collaborative endeavor launched by Museo Eduardo Carrillo to document the legacy of five Central Coast Chicano/a cultural treasures: Guillermo (Yermo) Aranda, Amalia Mesa-Bains, Eduardo Carrillo, Ralph D’Oliveira, and Carmen León. Nine organizations are contributing to a series of events and exhibitions taking place between January and April 2021 (full schedule here).
 

The development of  Califas The Ancestral Journey/ El Viaje Ancestral  accordion book, December 2019.

Califas: The Ancestral Journey/El Viaje Ancestral
A collaboration with Moving Parts Press

In recognition of this need to focus on the Latinx artists of the Central Coast Califas: The Ancestral Journey/El Viaje Ancestral is being produced jointly by Museo and Moving Parts Press as an integral part of the Califas Legacy Project. In order to capture the public mural and installation forms in which these artists work, the artists created a one-of-a-kind collaborative “mural,” hand painted in an accordion-fold book with an assemblage shadow box on the cover. The book was designed and letterpress printed by Felicia Rice of Moving Parts Press and co-published with Museo Eduardo Carrillo. A commercially printed trade edition of the book is being given to libraries, schools, and other youth-serving organizations in the Central Coast region. Learn more about the book on the Moving Parts press website here.

The Monterey Museum of Art has the book on display in their virtual exhibit devoted to the work of Chicanx and Latinx artists of the Monterey Bay Crescent here.

The MMA is also showing more books and broadsides from the Moving Parts Press Chicanx/Latinx Series in their virtual exhibit here.

The Santa Cruz and Watsonville public libraries have developed a suite of banners to launch of the book this winter. Find all of these events here.

We recognize the need to bring visibility to the vacant places in our culture’s art history through sharing the work of our region’s leading Chicano/a/x artists. Books need to be in people’s hands and the art needs to be part of people’s social consciousness.

Califas Legacy Project Documentary

Integral to the Califas Legacy Project is a documentary film by Wallace Boss. He records the artists in their own words and films them in their studio settings. It will complement and enhance the programming this coming summer and fall.

Collaboration with Young Writers’ Program

The sixth book in Hablamos Juntos series will come out this Spring. It will feature the Califas Legacy artists. The annual reading at Bookshop Santa Cruz offered by our long-time collaborator, the Young Writers Program, will feature some of the young authors reading their narratives inspired by the artists’ images. Join us.

Traveling exhibition

Exhibitions of the Califas project celebrate Latino arts in the Monterey Bay Crescent and begin in January 2021 at the Monterey Museum of Art. Other books from the Moving Parts Press Chicanx/Latinx Series will also be on view in Felicia Rice in Virtual FLUX at the museum.

The online Califas Legacy Project exhibitions launch on March 5, 2021 on the Museo Eduardo Carrillo and Santa Cruz Art League web sites. A virtual reception and panel discussion hosted by SCAL takes place the evening of March 5th. Museo’s Google Cultural Initiative exhibition launches on sequential Tuesdays beginning March 9, 2021.

A series of banners of the book, CALIFAS The Ancestral Journey/El Viaje Ancestral, is on display in the windows of both the Santa Cruz Public Library  and the Watsonville Public Library. Santa Cruz Public Libraries has been awarded a California Humanities grant for this programming.

Support

Thanks to the Arts Council of Santa Cruz County, Santa Cruz City Arts, and hit & run press for their support for this project.

 

Share your thoughts

Would you like to know more? Please contact us with your questions and thoughts, or post a comment below. We welcome your input.

 

A New Chapter: Art by Recent University and College Graduates

The time post graduation after earning a Bachelor’s degree in visual arts often is followed with the question, “What Next?”

How do we blend studio practice with practical needs like making a living supporting oneself and maybe a family.

This work reflects the time of transition right before or just after leaving school.

The artists are Jorge Gomez-Gonzalez, Jennifer Ortiz, Natalie Jauregui Ortiz and Karina Tavares Perez from University of California, Santa Cruz,  Narsiso Martinez from California State University, Long Beach, and Ysabel Martinez from the Cafritz Art Center at Montgomery College, Silver Springs, Maryland.

We have also featured these artists in our Hablamos Juntos series of broadsides. The 11 x 17 posters are available for downloads, along with text of interviews with each artist.

Keep an eye out for the work by these artists- you will see more of it in the ensuing years- I’m sure of it.

Catalog for Testament of the Spirit Wins Design Award

Museo gives a standing ovation for the amazing work of Wilted & Taylor Publishing Services, who have just received recognition for producing the Carrillo catalogue.

Testament of the Spirit has won a design and production award!  AND Testament of the Spirit has been selected to compete at the awards show in January for the “Best of Show” designation.

This award is through Publishing Professionals Network which is an organization for book publishers west of the Mississippi.

Congratulations to the Crocker team, our curators Susan Leask and Kristina Perea Gilmore, and to our writers for all the work in making the catalog so worthy of this honor.

Viva Eduardo!

 

Seen/Unseen: Stories into Creativity
A Film by by Wallace Boss

 Seen/UnSeen: Stories into Creativity (13 minutes, 2018, Santa Cruz and Monterey Counties, CA) is a film by Wallace Boss.  He is a seasoned documentarian whose career has focused on creativity.

The artists in Seen/UnSeen: Stories into Creativity are Doyle Foreman (sculpture), Edward Ramirez (photography) and Claire Thorson (painting).  In Seen/UnSeen you will get to hear each artist explore their studio or “in the world” process and how it shapes an artwork coming into being.  

A project of Museo Eduardo Carrillo,  Seen/UnSeen: Stories into Creativity  is part of a Santa Cruz County wide initiative titled Spoken/Unspoken.  Museo is committed to sharing the art and voices of contemporary artists.

The Spoken/Unspoken countywide collaborative venture was organized by Cabrillo Gallery and fueled by the generosity of a donor-advised grant from the Roy and Frances Rydell Visual Arts Fund at Community Foundation Santa Cruz County, which allowed this project to come into being.  Find out more here: www.spokenunspokenart.com

Through a myriad of practices, artists give voice to a broad array of ideas, feelings, and concerns.  They invite us to think, to feel, to wonder, to question, to act and react. Through art, artists can shout dissent, rally for a cause, incite action, and foster community. Art can inform us, speak unspoken secrets and give a voice to the silenced. Art can offer comfort and a platform to communicate grief, anger, or injustice for those in difficult circumstances. Art can delight us aesthetically and touch us emotionally. It can express deeply personal thoughts and desires. Art can present puzzles to be solved or ambiguities to ponder.

Discover, through Wallace Boss’s film how  Doyle Foreman (sculpture), Edward Ramirez (photography) and Claire Thorson (painting) bring the Unseen into the Seen.

A free film screening of “Seen/UnSeen- Stories into Creativity” (16 minutes) and panel discussion with the artists and film maker will be hosted by The Sesnon Gallery in the Porter Faculty Gallery – Porter College at University of California, Santa Cruz on March 14th at 6PM.  Come early for best parking.  Please email betsy@museoeduardocarrillo.org for more information.

Seen/Unseen Gallery

Click thumbnail to enlarge

 

MEC launches DOC/UNDOC exhibit on Google Cultural Institute

Museo Eduardo Carrillo is pleased to announce the launch of DOC/UNDOC Documentado/Undocumented Ars Shamánica Performática on Google Cultural Institute.
 
DOC/UNDOC is the brainchild of book artist and publisher Felicia Rice, and includes work of performance artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña, art historian Jennifer González, sound artist Zachary Watkins, video artist Gustavo Vazquez, and of course Rice herself, functioning as a printmaker, book artist, and publisher. Under Rice’s direction, they collectively produced what González characterizes as a “Gesamtkunstwerk”—a total work of art.

As a Partner with the Google Cultural Institute’s Art Project, Museo joins 250 of the world’s most acclaimed art institutions on the world stage, including San Paulo Street Art, Brazil; Musee D’Orsay, Paris; Museo Nacional de Arte, Mexico; and Tokyo National Museum, Japan. We are honored to be able to feature DOC/UNDOC on GCI!

 
 

The launch of the exhibit on GCI corresponds with the publication of the trade paperback version of the original limited edition art book at the heart of Doc/Undoc. This City Lights Books and Moving Parts Press trade edition presents the journey of DOC/UNDOC in a widely accessible, affordable book that not only documents the original collaborative artists’ book, but also provides a reader with their own interactive, immersive experience. The book is available for purchase here.

Testament of The Spirit: Paintings by Eduardo Carrillo on view January 21, 2018 -June 3, 2019

Museo Eduardo Carrillo is pleased to start 2018 by sharing news of the Carrillo retrospective.  The traveling exhibition Testament of the Spirit: Paintings by Eduardo Carrillo begins January 21st at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. 

Exhibition dates:

Pasadena Museum of California Art: January 21 – June 3, 2018
Crocker Art MuseumJune 24 – October 7, 2018
Triton Museum of Art: October 27, 2018 – January 27, 2019
American University Museum: April 6 – June 1, 2019

Exhibitions such as this cannot happen without the imagination, focused skill and planning, and hands on work of so many.  

Museo thanks:

  • Our guest curator Susan Leask and Associate Curator at the Crocker Art Museum, Kristina Gilmore. THEY MADE IT HAPPEN.  Profound thanks.
  • Lial Jones, ­Mort and Marcy Friedman Director and Scott Shields Associate Director and Chief Curator of the Crocker Art Museum who in 2008 envisioned this retrospective. 
  • Our team at the Pasadena Museum of California Art, starting with Susana Batiste, Executive Director and the energetic, “all things are possible” staff. They assembled an advisory team whose vision embraces activities in the community like the re-dedication of Carrillo’s “El Grito” mural in downtown Los Angeles. More to come.
  • Our catalog essayists who bring vivid and thoughtful ideas to Carrillo’s art. Philip Bookman, Dr.Gilberto Cardenas, Maureen Davidson, Michael Duncan,  Timothy Drescher PhD,  Susan Leask,  Dr. Amalia Mesa-Bains,  Tere Romo and Christina Waters PhD. 
  • The Carrillo Family and our circle of lenders who have generously allowed their pieces to leave home for the extensive year and a half tour.  
  •  
  • James Pennuto, master conservator, who restored long hidden works, reviving Carrillo’s bright array of colors.
  • Wilted & Taylor Publishing Services, the publishers of the catalog who fell in love with Carrillo’s art. It shows in every page.
  • The shipping team ATT Howe who made sure that all the far-flung works were provided safe transit.

We thank them all who have made this dream come true.

 

Alison Carrillo, Founder    
Betsy Anderse, Executive Director
Museo Eduardo Carrillo

Carlos Jackson: Reckoning With Hxstory

Reckoning with Hxstory, is an online-exhibition curated by Museo Eduardo Carrillo featuring Carlos F. Jackson’s drawings and silkscreen prints. The works in the series present a narrative that underlines hxstories of structural inequalities in the U.S. This online exhibition takes its title from the first sentence of Chicanx Studies founding manifesto, El Plan de Santa Barbara, which states, “For all people, as with individuals, the time comes when they must reckon with their history.”i

Read More of the essay by Gilda Posada

Hence, to reckon with hxstory, or to “take inventory,” as Gloria Anzaldúa calls it, is the first step towards conocimiento/ consciousness.ii She states that one must first take inventory to fully understand the weight one carries on their back, ultimately so to stop blaming victims for the problems generated by years of racism, colonialism, and oppression. These “weights” can be seen through the accounts that the viewer encounters when engaging with Jackson’s prints. The next step that Anzaldúa poses following the “taking of inventory” is a “winnowing out of the lies”, which is necessary to see what is true, so that injustice is not reproduced in actions that seek to generate social justice. Thus, in this journey, this exhibition replaces the i/e in history/herstory with an x to embrace decolonial teachings, as well as to create a space with the “x” for those whose truths and narratives have been left out because of hegemonic, patriarchal and heteronormative oppression.

Carlos Jackson’s Reckoning with Hxstory pulls from a variety of influences in his life as a cultural worker. Jackson’s extensive background in Chicanx art can be seen in the content of the work, particularly in creating visuals where consciousness and subjectivity is produced. As a printmaker, the influence of Cuban poster artists and graphic designers can be seen in layout choices and color selections. For example, the influence of René Mederos’ screen-print series “vallas”, on the history of the Cuban revolution commemorating the 20th anniversary of the assault on the Moncada, can be seen in Jackson’s use of visual narrative formation and choice in 3’x 4’ prints. Though his prints are bigger than René Mederos’ prints, they still carry the function of being utilized for public educational use to anyone with or without literacy. Jackson’s usage of large blocks of color to define shapes and people is similar to that of Mederos, but traces of his training in painting can be seen in the strokes used in the shading and definition of figures in his prints. The choice of interconnecting moments through iconic images of liberation movements in the last six decades is part of the larger work that Jackson engages in as a scholar in the Chicanx Studies department of UC Davis, and as Director and founder of Taller Arte del Nuevo Amanecer (TANA), a Chicanx community art center.

Jackson’s large-scaled prints demand the viewer confront hxstories of fascism, racism and colonialism that Blacks, Chicanxs and other minority groups have endured in U.S. That is to say, the experiences depicted here are a result the settler-colonial project brought into the Americas, where people were seen as less then by their white counterparts due to skin color, hair texture, religion and ancestral backgrounds. This haunting truth comes to life in his screen-print RELENTLESS/Little Rock 9, where he replicates the fifteen-year-old Elizabeth Eckford attempting to enter Little Rock Central High School on September 4, 1957 following the Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decisions for integration.iii A furious white mob of roughly 400 gathered around the school that day along with the Arkansas National Guard to refuse these students entry. Jackson’s print brings to life the racism thrown at Eckford by white women, it is as if the viewer could hear the echoes of white supremacy ringing in their ears years later. Of course, to the viewer paying attention to the current events happening in the U.S., they will find that the echoes of white supremacy have not died out; the viewer will find a parallel between RELENTLESS/Little Rock 9 and the recent pro-white/alt-right attacks happening throughout the country, most noticeably in Charlottesville, Virginia. This is why it is of importance for the viewer to recognize as Anzaldúa states that “Awareness of your situation must come before inner changes, which in turn come before changes in society,” because “nothing happens in the ‘real’ world unless it first happens in the images in our heads.” iv This point is crucial, especially in a time where news is manipulated into alt-facts that deceive the viewer.

For those that feel overwhelmed and exhausted because they have been aware of the current conditions happening across the U.S., Jackson’s work then offers a reminder of courage, resistance and ruthless and unapologetic motivation to keep going. The image of Eckford walking by the white mob can serve as a motivation in the ability to keep seeking change in America until it becomes the America which embodies a true democracy and gives opportunity to all despite documentation, race, gender and/or body ability. The transparent red gradient with the word “Relentless” which appears over RELENTLESS/Little Rock 9, signals to the viewer that against all odds, people of color have resisted through being relentless and unyielding to white supremacy. In this print, Eckford is no longer seen as a victim of white supremacy, instead she is someone who relentlessly imagined an alternative future for herself and future generations. Eckford then becomes someone creating a new image of America in her head and paving that path towards self-determination and democracy.

The reiterations of resistance and the carving out America continue throughout Jackson’s work, for instance, Historical Materialism: Carpooling and Breaking the Fast, 1969, give us insights to moments of power and agency. These two prints showcase hxstories of Boycotts where Black and Chicanx communities organized as a means to be seen as human beings because America has not always looked at their experiences as such. This concept can be traced back to the first-contact of settler Europeans in the Americas, extending into the trans-Atlantic slave trade, and the implementation of nation-state borders, which created genocide and institutional racist structures. Institutional racist structures, where migrants, people of color, the working class, and those labeled as the marginal of society were (and continue to be) seen as products in the agricultural chain, the supply industry, the labor force, etc.v Arrival 2, XICANX/Citizenship: Arrival, and Bracero Living or the Concentration Camp recap the life that Mexican workers who participated in the bracero program underwent from 1942-1947 in primarily agricultural labor contracts.vi Upon arrival, braceros were taken to processing centers where they were stripped and searched and then sprayed with DDT by Department of Agriculture. These long hxstories of exploitation and atrocious working and living conditions were met with opposition and ultimately strikes. Often overlooked, but shown in Jackson’s Breaking the Fast, 1969, is the Filipino community, who took the first role in leading the strike against growers in the summer of 1965, demanding that their wages be increased from $1.10 an hour as well as demanding better living conditions.vii In Carlos Jackson’s screen-print we see Cesar Chavez preparing to breaks his 25-day fast in Delano, California. The fatigued Cesar Chavez sits with Senator Robert F. Kennedy, his wife Helen Chavez and mother Juana Chavez. Often cut out of the frame, but shown here behind Chavez and flying the U.F.W. flags are Irwin DeShetler, Andy Imutan, Larry Itliong and Philip Vera Cruz, all major organizers who joined forces with Mexican field laborers in the fight against exploitation and abuse. An understanding of this hxstory allows the viewer to gain a new perspective on unity. Jackson’s images remind many of painful struggles, but many forget that it was not done alone; these communities made each other stronger. Filipinos farmworkers introduced “Isang Bagsak” to the U.F.W. a phrase that means “one down, one fall.” A visual retelling of these narratives allows for the viewer to gain a further understanding that alone change is hard, and if one falls, everyone falls, but that together change can be achived.

Jackson’s inventory in moments in hxstory are a testament that one is never alone in the struggle; his work demonstrates that the foundations towards liberation have been set and that we have nothing to lose but our chains. Before Boycott was used as a tool towards liberation in the West coast it was used by Black America in the south, as seen through Historical Materialism: Carpooling. In this print, the viewer is given an insight into the mid 50s where three womxn and a man are entering a cab while an empty bus appears across from them. This moment which we see is alluding to the bus strikes between December 5, 1955 to December 20, 1956, where Black people were engaging in the struggle to end segregated seating in Montgomery, Alabama. Once again, these fundamental images remind us that defiance can serve as a tool against the tyrannizing forces today and remind us that everyone in America today is of value regardless of federally recognized citizenship. The bus boycotts are lived testaments that showed America that the Black experience was composed of people with families, with histories, with culture, with aspirations and with dreams that deserve to be respected and lived. Jackson proposes that “in order to know who we are, we first need awareness, which comes through education, and the only education that can produce this knowledge as a liberatory form is governed by praxis; action and reflection.”viii The creation of Black Lives Matter builds upon this vision, and reminds us that a reformation of America is needed. To reckon with hxstory, the viewer must educate themselves and hold America accountable for slavery, segregation, Jim Crow, lynching, and the mass incarceration of Black individuals. The viewer must then sit with these hxstories and connect them to the genocide of Black bodies in the hands of police departments and grand juries convening across the U.S.

Remaining in the hxstory of resistance, Jackson’s work continues to reckons with instances of state violence in relation to protestors. Workings of the State Apparatus: Walter Gadsden being attacked, Birmingham Alabama, May 4, 1964, references The Birmingham Campaign, which was composed of a series of lunch counter sit-ins, marches on City Hall and boycotts on downtown merchants to protest segregation laws in the city.ix In Jackson’s print we witness a case of a reoccurring practices, where peaceful demonstrators were met with violent attacks, high-pressure fire hoses, as well as police dogs. This moment is considered to be “one of the major turning points in the Civil Rights Movement and the ‘beginning of the end’ of a centuries-long struggle for freedom.” x Likewise, The workings of the State Apparatus: August 29, 1970, tells the hxstory of protestors in East Los Angeles. On August 29, 1970, the National Chicano Moratorium Committee organized its first public demonstration to protest the war in Viet Nam in East Los Angeles, where 30,000 attended the demonstration in a display of solidarity. The march culminated with speeches and festivities at Laguna Park and despite peaceful rally, the Los Angeles Police Department opened fire on activists, families and children, using “non-lethal projectiles” and tear gas. Police officials alleged that a liquor store had been broken into and that the robbers fled into the crowd. As families scattered, innocent community members were beaten and arrested, during the ensuring riot, police shot a tear gas projectile into the Silver Dollar Bar, where a group of people had sought refuge from the violence. Ruben Salazar, a columnist for the Los Angeles Times, was hit in the head by the tear gas canister and killed. By the end of the day police had killed three people and injured more than sixty other individuals. Ruben Salazar’s image and events at the Silver Dollar Bar had become emblematic of the moratorium’s tragic end.xi Workings of the State Apparatus: Walter Gadsden being attacked, Birmingham Alabama, May 4, 1964 and The workings of the State Apparatus: August 29, 1970, visually elaborate the lengths to which the American government and law enforcement agencies were willing to go to crush peaceful dissent and protest. In these prints, Jackson is asking the viewer for communal remembrance; a note to never forget or underestimate the extent to which institutions, local or federal, will go to in order to keep their power and privileges in place.

The measures which the American government has taken to keep its dominance can always be taken one step further, as can be seen in The workings of the State Apparatus: Martin and The workings of the State Apparatus: Ernesto Guevara, Age 39. Although, the viewer will want to move past these works because of content, the viewer must reckon with the distaste and impulse to turn away. While these works bring sorrow, they also highlight the radical power that an idea of different worlds being possible holds. American empire played a role in attempting to extinguish the flames of hope and change across the world through the murders of Martin Luther King Jr. and Ernesto “Che” Guevara. Jackson inserts these images to continue communal remembrance, but also to signal that ideas of a different world will be seen as a threat, and that those in power will use all their resources to extinguish any change that does not uphold their power. But Jackson is also presenting us with these moments in movements to remind us as Fred Hampton said, “You can kill a revolutionary but you can never kill the revolution.” Thus, reflection of these images can serve as a collective consciousness on the way to seeing that there are multiple ways of being and doing the work, so long as it keeps the revolution in process.

Carlos Jackson’s work will carry the open wounds of injustice, sometimes imposed on by institutions and other times by community members that were utilizing the master’s tools to oppress their own community. Each print will ask the viewer to bear witness to the hurt and exclusion, but each print also carries a redemptive quality if the viewer is willing to “winnow out the lies.” This is the nature of Carlos Jackson’s work; it is an invitation to those who want to embark on the journey towards decolonization. Now is the time for the viewer to readjust their own views and seek the truths, there is no direct answer as to how to do this and no direct end because each individual governs a different path. Jackson’s work has done its part in creating new symbols, new forms of hxstories, new perspectives or/and ways of seeing ourselves in the world. Just as the children in Drawing for Xicanx Park, April 1970 that plant the seeds for a new space that will hold their hxstories, truths, and visions of the world they wish to see, we too must begin to carve out the space we envision for Nuestra Américasin fronteras, sin miedo y resistiendo.

C/S

—Gilda Posada

i El Plan de Santa Barbara. 1969

ii Anzaldúa, Gloria E. Borderlands La Frontera: The New Mestiza. (San Francisco: Aunt Lute Books, 2007) 105

iv Anzaldúa, Gloria E. ibid. 109.

v See print by Carlos Jackson’s Victoria, Texas, May 13, 2013.

vii Imutan, Andy . What happened when Mexicans and Filipinos joined together. From: 40th anniversary of Delano Grape Srrike two-day reunion in Delano, September 2005<http://ufw.org/research/history/mexicans-filipinos-joined-together/>

viii Email exchange with Carlos Jackson on 9/13/2016.

ix The Birmingham Campaign. Public Broadcasting Service. 1995-2017. < http://www.pbs.org/black-culture/explore/civil-rights-movement-birmingham-campaign/#.Waj5R5OGNsM>

x The Birmingham Campaign. ibid

xi Jackson, Carlos F. Protest Arte: Chicana and Chicano Art. (Tucson: The University of Arizona Press, 2009) 127

 

   

The Chicanx Poster Workshop: A Space Where Subjectivity Is Produced

I frame my printmaking and writing practice as that of a cultural worker…
…Chicanx posters demonstrate that Chicanx identity is fluid, in development, and open for creation, a finding that contests the widespread notion that Chicanx identity is a fixed category that is manifested in predictable ways.  

—Carlos Francisco Jackson

Read the entire article from AZTLÁN: A JOURNAL OF CHICANO STUDIES in PDF format

 

Carlos Francisco Jackson is an associate professor and chair in the Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies at the University of California, Davis. He received a BS in community and regional development and an MFA in painting from UC Davis, and he was awarded the Robert Arneson Award for excellence in the MFA program. He has been a fellow at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in central Maine and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts. Between 2004 and 2015 he served as founding director of Taller Arte del Nuevo Amanecer. Jackson has shown his art at exhibitions throughout the United States. He is the author of Chicana and Chicano Art: ProtestArte (University of Arizons Press, 2009), and his work appears in the exhibition catalogs Mi América/My America: Carlos Jackson (University of Illinois, 2011) and Estampas de la Raza: Contemporary Mexican American Prints from the Romo Collection (University of Texas Press, 2012).

carlosfjackson.com
http://www.artpractical.com/feature/abolish-borders-as-revolutionary-futurity/
https://boomcalifornia.com/2014/04/16/serigrafia/

Text © Gilda Posada, all rights reserved
Artwork and Text © Carlos Francisco Jackson, all rights reserved