Saturday, February 4, 2017
Week 5 Post - Otro Corazon
Otro Corazon was extremely enlightening and informative of the history behind Chicano art, and its intersectionality with queerness. The discourse about rasquache sensibilities, while going into this symposium with little to no knowledge about this term, was compelling and felt particularly meaningful in the context of our current political climate. This brought together, for me, both art and identity politics. Making the most from the least is an empowering stance, and transcends many arenas. The exclusivity of euro-centric art has shaped the space of queer Chicano art, in so many ways delineated by the different panelists. The idea of subverting existing paradigms upside down is extremely applicable to our current nation’s state. The way this subversion is portrayed through art is powerful and helped to queer Chicano art, redefining this art’s position and integral components.
The first panel discussed this sensibility of preferring community as a specific pathway into understanding art practices and their relation to the community from they originated. I particularly enjoyed this panel because of the discussion it offered when talking about Tomas’ lasting impact and the concepts he provided Chicano art with. Chicano art is important as it is the manifestation of a political movement. The mainstream institutional practice of exclusion attempts to prove that not all art is ethnic art, while in fact, all art is ethnic art. Art cannot escape the community from which it originates. Judy Baca made several empowering points, especially delineating the importance of exploring one’s space as a woman. Her exploration of options as a Chicana woman resulted in impactful artwork that is interactive. Her work demonstrated the importance of interactive art and community involvement, therefore shaping art through the space in which it exists. This reinforces the concept of art based community making, a dynamic in which art is shaped by and shapes the community from which it is created or exists in. It would be useful to further examine the concept of art based community making, and the way that has influenced communities in Los Angeles.