March 22, 2018

New mural for the San Jose Museum of Art: 'Sophie Holding the World Together'

‘Sophie Holding the World Together’, 2017
Mural commissioned by the San Jose Museum of Art, in collaboration with The Propeller Group.


In these times when fear, inequity and divisiveness are so prevalent, this mural is intended to convey hope and empathy. The figure is based on an inspiring young activist named Sophie Cruz, who represents mixed-status families and advocates for immigration reform in the US.
When I met Sophie to shoot reference photos of her I asked if there was anything she wanted to hold for the photographs, and she came back holding a globe. This seemed perfect, while the lotus was added to symbolize the beauty that can grow from humble origins. .
I’d like to thank everyone who helped make this mural happen, and everyone who came by offering positive feedback. The response from the people in San Jose was some of the most encouraging and supportive I’ve received anywhere, I’m very grateful.


Many thanks to Tuan Andrew Nguyen, Matt Lucero, The Propeller Group, Lauren Dickens and the San José Museum of Art, Empire Seven Studios, Will Moran, the Children’s Discovery Museum, The Knight Foundation, University Art, Tad Freese and Brook Hartzell, Beverly and Peter Lipman, Lubliner, Dipti and Rakesh Mathur, Ian Reinhard, and SGSR. Additional thanks to Sophie + su familia, Eric Heights, Yosi Sergant, Define American, Yosimar Reyes, Bích Cao, and everyone else who helped or showed love.


“No Te Rindas
Esta es la Hora y el Mejor Momento/
Don't Give Up
This is the Hour and the Best Moment/
Đừng Bỏ Cuộc
Bây giờ là phút giây và khoảnh khắc tuyệt vời nhất”
(-M. Benedetti)


January 22, 2018

New EL MAC prints: "Purgatory"

New print release this Tuesday, January 23rd. Purchase info will be posted sometime after noon Pacific Standard Time at http://elmac.net

Print details:
Purgatory
Signed, titled, and numbered by the artist.
Hand-pulled serigraph by master printer Tony Clough at Serio Press in Pasadena, California. Printed in five colors/layers.
Printed on acid-free, 100% cotton, 290 gsm, Coventry Rag paper.
18.25in x 20.25in paper size
(16.25in x 17in printed area)
This print has the same exact dimensions as the 'Los Campesinos' prints from 2015.

There are two slightly different color editions of this print:

Purgatory:
edition of 47, darkest brushwork layer printed in black

Purgatory II:
edition of 25, darkest brushwork layer printed in dark teal blue

Artist's statement about the work:
'Across ancient cultures from around the world there are concepts of a period of postmortem atonement, with associated traditions of prayers and offerings made for the souls of the deceased so as to relieve their expiatory suffering. This artwork is also, in its own way, a similar kind of prayer or offering.
In these times of fear, confusion, nativism, and worsening inequity as more and more wealth is distributed from the many to a few, I painted this piece partly as a meditative gesture of support for the marginalized and scapegoated amongst us who live and work in a metaphorical state of purgatory.
"As brothers in the fight for equality... Our separate struggles are really one -- a struggle for freedom, for dignity and for humanity. You and your valiant fellow workers have demonstrated your commitment to righting grievous wrongs forced upon exploited people. We are together with you in spirit and in determination that our dreams for a better tomorrow will be realized." - Martin Luther King, Jr., in a 1966 telegram sent to UFW leader Cesar Chavez