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February 25, 2011 / Claremont Art Events

Artist Harry Gamboa Jr. at Scripps College on February 28, 2011

I went to the last day of the MOCA Artist’s Museum on January 31 because Lita Albuquerque, my guru, was there that day and I wanted my husband to meet her and see her work in person. She was a delight, as usual, and my husband, good man, also loved her work. The Artist’s Museum was an exhibition of dozens of important artists (including Lita) who have shaped the contemporary art scene in Los Angeles since 1980. I wish we hadn’t waited until the last day to go; we didn’t have nearly enough time to take it all in.

A few of the pieces really stuck with me including the photographs of Chicano men taken by Harry Gamboa Jr. The series of black and white photos showed these men on empty streets, posed with legs slightly spread and chins raised. Are these gang members, criminals? Of course, the men are from all walks of life: writers, artists, engineers, community leaders, professors, etc. Gamboa has cleverly and embarrassingly  drawn us into the issue of stereotyping that all Chicano men live with every day. Now he’ll be coming to Claremont to talk about his work, which has been shown all over the world and parts of which are now permanently archived at Stanford University.

His talk is the second in the artist lecture series on Scripps College campus. He begins at 1:30pm, in the Edwards Humanities Building, room 204.  It’s free and open to the public.

Here is some general biographical information on Gamboa Jr.:

Harry Gamboa Jr. has been actively creating works in various media/forms that document and interpret the contemporary urban Chicano experience since 1972.

He is a member of the faculty at California Institute of the Arts, lectures in the Chicana/o Studies Department at CSU Northridge, and has also taught at various other universities and art institutions: UC Los Angeles; UCRiverside; UC Irvine; UC Santa Barbara; UC San Diego; CSU Los Angeles; Otis/Parsons; and Maine College of Art.

He co-founded Asco (Spanish for nausea) 1972-1987, the East L.A. conceptual performance art group.

His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally: Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City (2011); Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (2010); Musée Nicéphore Niépce, Chalon-sur-Saône, France (2010); Museo de Arte de Zapopan, Guadalajara, México (2010); Musée de l’Elysée, Lausanne, Switzerland (2009); Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, United Kingdom (2009); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2008, 2001); Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporaneo, Mexico City (2008); Japanese American National Museum, Los Angeles (2008); El Museo del Barrio, New York (2008); The Huntington Library, San Marino (2008); Museo José Luis Cuevas, Mexico City (2006); Centre Pompidou, Paris (2006); Museo Nacional de la Estampa, Mexico City (2005); International Center of Photography, New York (2003); MIT List Visual Arts Center (2000); Queens Museum of Art (1999); Smithsonian Institution (1997); Statens Museum for Kunst, Copenhagen (1996); 1995 Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art; Museum of Modern Art, New York (1994); Getty Research Institute (1994); LAX/CSU Los Angeles (1994); Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (1979); Museo de Arte Moderno, Mexico City (1978).

He has been awarded several individual artist fellowships: Rockefeller Humanities Fellowship/CSU Los Angeles (2004); Durfee Artist Award (2001); The Flintridge Foundation Visual Artist Award (2000); J. Paul Getty Trust Fund for the Visual Arts (1990); California Arts Council (1996); National Endowment for the Arts (1987 and 1980).

Wow, huh? See you there.

Photo by Barbara Carrasco at the MOCA Artist’s Museum exhibition from Harry Gamboa Jr’s website.

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