21 Aug Barrio Logos: Displacement and Vanishing Iconography Opening Reception on October 7th
“Who gives the barrio its logos, the essential reason that defines its being? Who decides the uses to which it is put and the cultural practices that characterize it? In the imperious logic of the marketplace, the owners of its real estate have primacy. But should material possession alone direct the form and function of the barrio? Can its resident majority (regardless of their marketplace status) claim a different kind of priority, one based on belonging to, rather than necessarily owning the spaces of the barrio? In other words, can use value trump exchange value?
If so, its historical habitation by working class Mexicans and other Latinos gives them an ethical, and perhaps political, claim to primacy and protection in their long-standing urban locations. Sadly, this has not often been the case, as the barrios have always been subject to the strongest winds of urban change.
Through most of the 20th century their social, spatial and cultural integrity were vulnerable to the slash and burn modernism of monumental slum clearance, urban renewal, and freeway construction projects that cleared these strategic urban spaces for “higher and better” uses than those of its proletarian residents. In our post-modernist present, the threat is more insidious and dispersed, as the invisible hand of real estate speculation catalyzes a piece-meal but cumulative displacement of working class Latino households, especially renters, through residential and commercial gentrification. Even Latino homeowners who are not forced out, may feel this displacement as their familiar social spaces morph into an unfamiliar commercial and demographic milieu.
But today, as in the past, artists of all stripes are like canaries in the coalmine, as their well-tuned sensibilities gauge the tangible and intangible consequences of changes in the air around them. As such, the artists in this exhibition express a variety of insights—some allusive, others transparent—about the complex dynamics of being-in-the barrios. Their creative reflections on the barrio’s logos thus enact a discourse on its meaning and a theorizing of its possible future. We would do well to engage them with their barrio-logical inquiry”
– Raúl Villa for Barrio Logos
(Inglewood, CA) Residency Art Gallery, in conjunction with Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA is extremely pleased to present the group exhibition Barrio Logos: Displacement and Vanishing Iconography, curated by Oscar Magallanes. The group exhibition will run from September 23rd through December 16th, 2017, with an opening block party reception on Saturday, October 7th from 1pm to 6pm on Queen St in front of the gallery. Barrio Logos will feature work from John Carlos de Luna “Barrio Dandy”, Adriana Corral, Pablo Cristi, Aaron Estrada, Miles “El Mac” MacGregor, Patrick Martinez, Ofelia Marquez, Vincent Valdez and Cindy Vallejo.
The Chicano movement born of the civil rights movement of the 1960’s in Southern California gave rise to art, murals, west-coast hand style graffiti, fashion, tattoo and literary works along with lowrider culture and fashion as forms of self identifying and culture pride in the midst of oppression and segregation. This unique style has spread to many countries but in Los Angeles, one of the birthplaces of the style it has faced persistent attacks whether in the form of criminalization to steep fines placed on unsanctioned murals. This has created an erasure of the cultural markers that speak most clearly in opposition to systemic racism. There is a heightened urgency to the preservation and documentation of this work in the midst of rapid gentrification. This exhibition will bring together artist that not only continue to use Chicano/Chicana Aesthetics but help continue the use of art as a means for challenging dominant narratives. The exhibition will also include performance works and a public art component as well.
Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA is a far-reaching and ambitious exploration of Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles taking place from September 2017 through January 2018. Led by the Getty, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA is a collaboration of arts institutions across Southern California. Through a series of thematically linked exhibitions and programs, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA highlights different aspects of Latin American and Latino art from the ancient world to the present day. With topics such as luxury arts in the pre-Columbian Americas, 20th century Afro- Brazilian art, alternative spaces in Mexico City, and boundary-crossing practices of Latino artists, exhibitions range from monographic studies of individual artists to broad surveys that cut across numerous countries. Supported by grants from the Getty Foundation, Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA involves more than 70 cultural institutions from Los Angeles to Palm Springs, and from San Diego to Santa Barbara. Pacific Standard Time is an initiative of the Getty.
Barrio Logos is the only PST LA/LA participating exhibition taking place in South Central Los Angeles. While the majority PST LA/LA exhibitions focus is on galleries and museums typically associated with strong art recognition or locations typically viewed as art centric or Chicano strongholds, this show is taking place in Inglewood. The city is 50% Latino of which the majority are Mexican or of Mexican descent. This gives Chicanos a rich history that stems back to Spanish land grants. The history of displacement began as far back as the Mexican-American war and is still ongoing. With the current political climate, the current groundbreaking for the of a massive football stadium, the shuttering of local storefronts, corporate purchases of historical buildings just a few miles from LAX makes this exhibition even more timely. The artists involved are practitioners from varying mediums and the programming will include live performances, artist talks and opportunities for calls to action.