L.A. Memo Paints a Dynamic Picture of Chicana/o Art
by Matt Stromberg
June 26, 2022
This is not a “greatest hits” show, but rather features many influential Chicana/o artists experimenting with both medium and message, a freedom afforded them by their relative obscurity at the time. For example, Linda Vallejo is represented by three works: “Pyramid City: Anahuac” (1980), a paper and wire model of futuristic urbanism named for the Nahuatl word for a region in central Mexico; “Complex Woman” (c. 1976), a black-and-white screen print of a female figure within a triangular form; and “Take a Bite” (1977–2017), a hand-colored experimental short film in playful dialogue with Warhol’s screen tests. Vallejo still avoids being hemmed in stylistically, although much of her recent work featured in her 2019 LA Plaza show Brown Belongings focuses on aesthetic and cultural associations of “Brown identity,” from the geometric abstractions of Datos Sagrados that visualize demographic data regarding Latinas/os, to the media send-ups of her Make ‘Em All Mexican series, in which she tints White movie stars and entertainers various shades of coffee, chocolate, and canela.