As part of its collaboration with LACMA on A Universal History of Infamy—an exhibition focused on alternative artistic practices in Latin America and the U.S.—18th Street Arts Center will present A Universal History of Infamy: Virtues of Disparity, a companion exhibition that will present smaller-scale works that offer different perspectives on globalized contemporary art practice today. Virtues of Disparity is structured around themes of reproduction and deception. The works featured will investigate the shortcomings of different systems of writing and transcriptions and their contested relation to authenticity. 18th Street Arts Center is also hosting a series of residencies for artists and collectives—including Dolores Zinny and Juan Maidagan, Mapa Teatro, Naufus Ramirez-Figueroa, and NuMu—that will serve as the foundation for the larger A Universal History of Infamy project. The artists and collectives in residence will interact with local artists, schools, museums, and community-based organizations, in some cases giving rise to new site-specific works.
Support for artists' residencies: $60,000 (2014); Implementation and artists' residencies support: $100,000 (2015)
Caption: Gala Porras-Kim, Notes After G.M. Cowan 10, 2012. Wood, paper, graphite, ink, post-it. Courtesy of the artist.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
From Latin America to Hollywood: Latino Film Culture in Los Angeles 1967–2017
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will present a series of film screenings, conversations with filmmakers, and online content exploring the shared influences of Latino and Latin American filmmakers and the work they created or presented in Los Angeles during the past half-century. From Latin America to Hollywood: Latino Film Culture in Los Angeles is centered on a period that began with the social, cultural, and political environment of the 1960s that sparked the Chicano and New Latin American cinema movements and extends to the present day. The Academy’s programming is grounded in its extensive series of oral histories with notable Latino and Latin American filmmakers. Their films will be presented together with public conversations about filmmaking and, in some cases, will premiere new Academy Film Archive restorations. The Academy’s programs will offer a rare opportunity for audiences to experience first-hand the perspectives of filmmakers including Gregory Nava, Lucrecia Martel, Edward James Olmos, and Alfonso Cuarón.
Exhibition research support: $100,000 (2013); Implementation and publication support: $150,000 (2015)
Caption: Actor and director Edward James Olmos as El Pachuco in a scene from Zoot Suit (1981). Courtesy of Universal Studies Licensing LLC.
Armory Center for the Arts
Below the Underground: Renegade Art and Action in 1990s Mexico
The art of the 1990s in Mexico has acquired an almost mythic status in recent years, coming to represent the moment that Mexican contemporary art assumed a place in the global arena. Below the Underground: Renegade Art and Action 1990s Mexico will add a new layer to the growing interest in this period by drawing attention to artists, such as Taniel Morales, Andrea Ferreyra, and Elvira Santamaría, who operated in the margins, away from the widening mainstream. The exhibition explores the alternative, often clandestine art practices that emerged during this period marked by increasing violence, currency devaluation, industrial pollution, and political corruption. Against this turbulent backdrop, artists in Mexico City, Guadalajara, Monterrey, and elsewhere devised alternative practices and new exhibition spaces to show work that often directly engaged the politics and economics of the moment.
Exhibition research support: $140,000 (2014); Implementation and publication support: $160,000 (2015)
Caption: Andrea Ferreyra, Torbellino, Photographic documentation of street performance, Mexico City, January, 1993. Photographer: Gabriela González Reyes. Performer: Andrea Ferreyra. Courtesy of Andrea Ferreyra, Gabriela González Reyes, and Armory Center for the Arts, Pasadena.
Autry Museum of the American West
Published in Los Angeles from 1967-1977, the influential bilingual newspaper La Raza provided a voice to the Chicano Rights Movement. La Raza engaged photographers not only as journalists but also as artists and activists to capture the definitive moments, key players, and signs and symbols of Chicano activism. The archive of nearly 25,000 images created by these photographers, now housed at the Chicano Studies Research Center at UCLA, provides the foundation for an exhibition exploring photography’s role in articulating the social and political concerns of the Chicano Movement during a pivotal time in the art and history of the United States. LA RAZA will be the most sustained examination to date of both the photography and the alternative press of the Chicano Movement, positioning photography not only as an artistic medium but also as a powerful tool of social activism.
Exhibition research support: $115,000 (2014); Implementation and publication support: $150,000 (2015)
Caption: Photograph by La Raza Photographic Staff, East L.A. High School Walkouts, 1968. La Raza Newspaper & Magazine Records, Coll. 1000. Courtesy of the UCLA Chicano Studies Research Center.
Chinese American Museum
Circles and Circuits: Chinese Caribbean Art
Circles and Circuits explores the art of the Chinese Caribbean diaspora from the early 20th century to the present day. By examining the contributions of artists of Chinese descent in Cuba, Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, and beyond, the exhibition will reveal the hidden complexities of the transcultural art of the Caribbean. The exhibition will be presented at two venues, the Chinese American Museum (CAM) and the California African American Museum (CAAM). The presentation at CAAM will trace the history of Chinese Caribbean art from the 1930s through the period of the region’s independence movements, showcasing the contributions of artists little known outside their own countries, such as Sybil Atteck (Trinidad and Tobago) and Manuel Chong-Neto (Panama), and providing a new context for understanding the better-known work of Wifredo Lam (Cuba). At CAM, the exhibition will focus on the work of contemporary artists such as Albert Chong and María Magdalena Campos-Pons, as well as artists of the ongoing Chinese Caribbean diaspora. The contemporary works featured explore issues of post-colonial history, popular culture, personal history, and the body.
Exhibition research support: $55,000 (2013); Implementation and publication support: $175,000 (2016)
The U.S.-Mexico Border: Place, Imagination, and Possibility
Since the 1990s, the U.S.-Mexico border has become an important site for creative exploration of issues related to emigration, immigration, labor conditions, hybrid identities, and transformation. The U.S.-Mexico Border: Place, Imagination, and Possibility presents the work of contemporary artists who explore the border as a physical reality (place), as a subject (imagination), and as a site for production and solution (possibility). The inclusion of artists from various disciplines, including design, architecture, sculpture, painting, and photography, reflects the ways in which contemporary artists and designers themselves cross disciplinary borders. Many of the artists featured in the exhibition pursue a creative problem-solving process sometimes described as “design thinking,” which involves invention, social engagement, and the task of making. The exhibition will include work by artists and designers such as Teddy Cruz, Adrian Esparza, Consuelo Jimenez Underwood, and Ana Serrano, who have engaged with the border region in their work.
Exhibition research support: $70,000 (2014); Implementation and publication support: $110,000 (2016)
Caption: Ana Serrano, Cartonlandia, 2008. Cardboard, paper, acrylic paint. 5’ x 4’ x 4.5’. Photo: Julie Klima. Courtesy of the artist.
California State University Long Beach (CSULB), University Art Museum
David Lamelas: A Life of Their Own
The University Art Museum (UAM) will organize the first monographic exhibition in the U.S. on the Argentine-born artist David Lamelas. Best known as a pioneer of conceptual art, Lamelas gained international acclaim for his work in the 1968 Venice Biennale, Office of Information about the Vietnam War at Three Levels. After moving to Los Angeles in 1976, Lamelas participated in the Long Beach Museum’s influential video arts program, and his ongoing conceptual practice influenced an emerging circle of L.A. artists. Since 1988, Lamelas has divided his time among various cities, including Los Angeles, New York, Brussels, Berlin, and Paris, and the nomadic nature of his practice has been an important influence on his creative production. The UAM exhibition will showcase the extraordinary breadth of his practice—encompassing post-minimalist sculpture, photography, and video installations and films--presenting many of his key works in the U.S. for the first time.
Exhibition research support: $100,000 (2013); Implementation and publication support: $200,000 (2015)
Caption: David Lamelas, the artist with Piel Rosa (Pink skin) (1965/1997), B/W Photography, 9.5 inches. Installation view, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, Exhibition: A New Refutation of Time co-curated by Dirk Snauwaert and Bartomeu Marí. Copyright: David Lamelas.
Fowler Museum at UCLA
Axé Bahia: The Power of Art in an Afro-Brazilian Metropolis
Axé Bahia: The Power of Art in an Afro-Brazilian Metropolis explores the unique cultural role of the city of Salvador, the coastal capital of the Brazilian state of Bahia and one of the oldest cities in the Americas. In the 1940s, Salvador emerged as an internationally renowned center of Afro-Brazilian culture, and it remains to this day an important hub of African-inspired artistic practices in Latin America. The Fowler will present the most comprehensive exhibition in the U.S. to date of the African-inspired arts of Bahia, featuring the work of well-known modernists such as Pierre Verger and Carybé, as well as contemporary artists such as Ayrson Heráclito and Caetano Dias. Including more than 100 works from the mid-20th century to the present, the exhibition will explore the complexities of race and cultural affiliation in Brazil and the ways in which influential artists have experienced and responded creatively to the realities of Afro-Brazilian identity in Bahia.
Exhibition research support: $170,000 (2013); Implementation and publication support: $250,000 (2016)
The Hammer Museum will bring to light the extraordinary contributions of women artists from Latin America and those of Latina and Chicana descent in the United States working between 1960 and the mid-1980s, years of radical aesthetic experimentation in art and explosive activism in the women's rights movement. During this key period, women of the region produced pioneering artworks that, in many cases, were realized in harsh political and social conditions. The exhibition will feature works in a range of media, including photography, video, and installation. Among the women included are emblematic figures such as Lygia Clark and Ana Mendieta, alongside lesser-known artists such as the Colombian sculptor Feliza Bursztyn and the U.S.-based photographer Isabel Castro. With an expanded view of Latin America that includes Latina and Chicana artists working in the U.S., Radical Women will explore how the different social, cultural, and political contexts in which these artists worked informed their practices. Featuring works by more than 100 artists from 15 countries, Radical Women will constitute the first genealogy of feminist and radical women's art practices in Latin America and their influence internationally.
Exhibition research support: $225,000 (2013); Implementation and publication support: $425,000 (2015)
Caption: Marie Orensanz, Limitada, 1978, Photograph, edition 1 of 5, 13 3/4 x 19 11/16 in. (35 x 50 cm), Courtesy of the artist.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens
Visual Voyages: Images of Latin America from Columbus to Darwin
Visual Voyages: Images of Latin America from Columbus to Darwin surveys the connections among art, science, and the environment in Latin America, from the voyages of Columbus to the publications of Charles Darwin in the mid-19th century. The exhibition will introduce audiences to new understandings of Latin American nature from a range of cultural perspectives: as a wondrous earthly paradise; as a new source of profitable commodities such as chocolate, tobacco, and cochineal; as a landscape of good and evil, as viewed through the filter of religion; as the site for an Enlightenment project of collecting and classifying; and, in the 19th century, as the reflection of a national spirit. Visual Voyages features approximately 100 objects that are drawn from the Huntington’s library, art, and botanical holdings, as well as from dozens of international collections, in a range of media including paintings, rare books, illustrated manuscripts, prints, and drawings. Importantly, the exhibition and its catalogue will bring together indigenous and European depictions of Latin American nature and offer a strongly documented case for Latin America’s own active participation in the production of excellent and influential scientific and artistic works during the early modern period.
Exhibition research support: $200,000 (2013); Implementation and publication support: $200,000 (2015)
Caption: Albert Eckhout, Fruits, pineapple and, melon etc., 1640–1650, oil on canvas, 35 13/16 × 35 13/16 in., N.92. Photo: John Lee, National Museum of Denmark, Copenhagen.
Japanese American National Museum
Transpacific Borderlands: The Art of Japanese Diaspora in Lima, Los Angeles, Mexico City, and São Paulo
Transpacific Borderlands will expand our understanding of what constitutes Latin American art by highlighting the work of 17 contemporary artists of Japanese ancestry from Lima, Los Angeles, Mexico City, and São Paulo. The exhibition explores the differing historical events and generations of diaspora that have shaped the work of these artists and the fundamental questions their work poses about migration, the fluidity of culture, and what it means to be Nikkei, Latin American, or Latino. In the 20th century, Japanese migrants arrived in large numbers in North and South America. Their experiences differed by country, ranging from strong assimilation in Mexico to cultural hybridity in Brazil to the trauma of wartime incarceration in the United States. Transpacific Borderlands presents artists whose works can be read with and against these histories, including Eduardo Tokeshi (Peru), Madalena Hashimoto Cordaro (Brazil), and Shizu Saldamando (U.S.). Ultimately, Transpacific Borderlands will contribute to a broader reconsideration of identity in a world where the meanings of race and ethnicity are constantly evolving, and where artists often inhabit dynamic transnational spaces.
Exhibition research support: $100,000 (2014); Implementation and publication support: $150,000 (2016)
Caption: Eduardo Tokeshi, Bandera 1, 2001. Oil on canvas.
LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes and California Historical Society
¡Murales Rebeldes!: Contested Chicana/o Public Art
¡Murales Rebeldes!: Contested Chicana/o Public Art looks at how Chicana/o murals in the greater Los Angeles area have been contested, challenged, censored, and even destroyed. During the late 1960s and 1970s, murals became an essential form of artistic response and public voice for the Chicano Movement, at a time when other channels of communication were limited for the Mexican-American community. The alternative vision of community empowerment these works presented could be transformative for some and deeply unsettling for others. The exhibition will examine a group of murals produced in the greater Los Angeles area in the 1970s and early 1980s that were subsequently threatened or destroyed, including murals by Barbara Carrasco, Roberto Chavez, Willie Herrón, and Sergio O’Cadiz, among others. By presenting this series of case studies, or “mural stories,” LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes, in collaboration with the California Historical Society, will examine how the iconography, content, and artistic strategies of the muralists challenged dominant cultural norms and historical narratives.
Exhibition research support: $80,000 (2015); Implementation and publication support: $100,000 (2016)
Caption: Roberto Chavez at work on The Path to Knowledge and the False University, East Los Angeles College. Photo: Manuel Delgadillo.
LA>Video Art in Latin America
Video Art in Latin America is the first major U.S. survey of the subject from the late 1960s until today, featuring works rarely if ever seen in the U.S. and introducing audiences to groundbreaking achievements throughout Latin America. The exhibition begins with the earliest experiments in South America, where video became an important medium for expressing dissent during an era dominated by repressive military regimes, and follows themes that emerged in multiple artistic centers throughout Latin America, from labor, ecology, and migration to borders, memory, and consumption. The exhibition also highlights the ways in which contemporary video artists in Latin America continue to pursue the sociopolitical commitment of earlier work, exploring themes related to identity and the consequences of social inequality, without shying away from humor and irony. The single-channel video programs will be complemented by a selection of environmental video installations.
Implementation and publication support: $95,000 (2015)
LACE and Pitzer College Art Galleries will mount a two-part exhibition on the early performance-based works of Juan Downey (1940-1993). Born in Chile, Downey moved to Paris in the 1960s and later settled in Washington, D.C., and then New York, where he developed a practice that included sculpture, performance, installation, and video. Although Downey has become known for his multi-channel video works such as Video Trans Americas (1973–1976) and The Thinking Eye (1976–1977), which critique Eurocentric perspectives regarding Latin American identity, Juan Downey: Radiant Nature will consider his earlier artistic practice. Comprising interactive electronic sculptures, happenings and performances, as well as installation, these earlier bodies of work will be explored for their progressive trans-disciplinary investigation of technology, energy, the environment, and politics. These experimental and ephemeral works have in many cases not been seen since their original presentations and will be reconstructed and restaged based on groundbreaking new research.
Exhibition research support: $120,000 (2014); Implementation and publication support: $200,000 (2015)
Caption: Juan Downey, Map of America, 1975. Colored pencil, pencil, and synthetic polymer paint on map on board. 34 1/8 x 20 in. (84.7 x 51.4 cm). Photograph by Harry Shunk. The Estate of Juan Downey, New York, via The Museum of Modern Art, New York.
LACMA Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915–1985
Found in Translation: Design in California and Mexico, 1915–1985 is a groundbreaking exhibition and accompanying book about design dialogues between California and Mexico. Its four main themes—Spanish Colonial Inspiration, Pre-Columbian Revivals, Folk Art and Craft Traditions, and Modernism—explore how modern and anti-modern design movements defined both locales throughout the twentieth century. Half of the show’s more than 300 objects represent architecture, conveyed through drawings, photographs, films, and models to illuminate the unique sense of place that characterized California’s and Mexico’s buildings. The other major focus is design: furniture, ceramics, metalwork, graphic design, and murals. Placing prominent figures such as Richard Neutra, Luis Barragán, Charles and Ray Eames, and Clara Porset in a new context while also highlighting contributions of less familiar practitioners, this exhibition is the first to examine how interconnections between California and Mexico shaped the material culture of each place, influencing and enhancing how they presented themselves to the wider world.