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Display on Contemporary Chicano/a Art, Sept.-Oct. 2004

In recognition of Hispanic Heritage Month (September 15 - October 15) and the incredible diversity of the population it celebrates, a new LACIC display focuses on the creative visual arts, with a selection of works on contemporary Chicano/a art. These works, which can be found in the FIU Libraries’ collections, focus largely on visual art as the mode of expression and resistance, while acknowledging other forms of art, such as literature and performance rooted in a similar artistic vein. Though it is problematic to assert that a single idea or medium links the range of art produced, there are recurring themes. In the foreword to Chicano Art for Our Millennium, Thomas Wilson argues that Chicano art is a distinctly American art, tied to the “geographical cohesiveness, ethnic associations, subject matter, and political and social edge” that has characterized the Chicano experience.

Wilson further suggests that Chicano artists are aware of the range of artistic traditions and incorporate them into their work, from “references to Goya, Sargent, Monet, Matisse, Gauguin, Picasso, Duchamp, and even Vermeer, to movements such as surrealism and German expressionism, and to pre-Hispanic, Spanish, Spanish colonial, and Mexican art.” For instance, drawing significantly from the Mexican muralist tradition, graffiti and murals imaginatively utilize public space. Graphic arts, as well as the use of more conventional mediums, absorb the rich colors and themes frequently associated with Chicano art. The collection of works at FIU includes several volumes from exhibits, such as the CARA: Chicano Art: Resistance and Affirmation exhibit, as well as others that highlight art from a variety of locations and media.

Stop by LACIC, GL 225, to see the display.

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Last updated:
September 15, 2004