Avenue 50 Studio Show–Stamp Project

5 Jun

The stamp project keeps on growing!  On Saturday, June 12, Avenue 50 Studio Annex kicks of the Circle of Women Stamp Project exhibit with an opening reception at 7 p.m.  The exhibition runs through July 4, 2010.

To learn more about the Circle of Women project, you can connect with the artists involved on our Facebook Page.

Along with the exhibitions lined up, Margaret and Rosie Garcia have produced a catalog that includes all of the artists who have participated thus far.

Avenue 50 Studio is located at:

131 N. Avenue 50 in Highland Park

They are open Tuesday-Thursday, Saturday & Sunday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.

For more info visit their website.

See you at the opening!


Stamp Project: Creating Cultural Currency

25 Mar

This Sunday, I have the honor of participating with a number of amazing artists in an exhibition curated by spirited Chicana painter, Margaret Garcia.

Margaret is currently organizing a National Women’s Exhibition, through which she hopes to provide a platform for otherwise unknown female artists to share their talent and passion for art with viewers from all over the United States.

In order to fund this huge project, Margaret has created the “Circle of Women” (which also includes men!) and called on her friends to submit an image to be reproduced and sold through gallery exhibitions and sales, with proceeds going to fund the National Exhibition.

The first of these exhibits takes place on Sunday, Mrach 28, 2010 at ChimMaya Gallery in East Los Angeles.  Participating artists inlude:

Grace Barraza-Vega, Jose Lozano, Raoul de la Sota, Magu, Ofelia Esparza, Sonya Fe, Margaret Garcia, Rosie Garcia, Michael Rascon and many more!

ChimMaya is located at:

5283 E. Beverely Blvd.  Los Angeles CA 90022

Group Exhibition at SPACE in South Pasadena

5 Feb

Last-minute heads up!  In all the hectic day-to-day, I forgot to post that I will be in a group show beginning Saturday, February 6th.  It includes work by Jennifer D. Anderson, Scott Gandell, Peter Garnica, Susanne Mitchell, Carmen Daniel Schilaci, Ray Shui, Daniel Valdes, Katie VinZant and Tony Wong.

Opening Reception is Saturday, February 6 from 7-9 p.m. with a preview from 5-9 p.m.

Space is located at :  1506 Mission Street (West of Fair Oaks) South Pasadena, CA 91030


Tuesday – Friday, 11:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Saturday, 12:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

SPACE’s 1st Print Annual was curated by Scott Gandell and organized by Katya Shaposhnik and Hope Perello.

See you there!


15 Jan

I know, I know.  I promised the print of La Muerte de Momo.  But, between the last post and today, I have been swamped with work and am participating in a number of outreach projects for the museum.

Currently, I’m designing the educational component for our exhibition brochures (the first of their kind!) and I will be attending the local art fairs as well as some good old community outreach festivals in the area.

I will have a print by next weekend–I promise.  In the meantime, I highly recommend the Robert Hughes’ bio on Goya, simply titled “GOYA.”  Who knew Robert Hughes was capable of such passion?!   I also recommend any type of California mystery novel (specifically Chandler or Hammett).  They make the long sleepless nights go by faster.

Cheers to all.  Come visit me at Photo LA and LA Art Fair.  I go back to brochure writing now….

New Block: La Muerte de MoMo

9 Jan

Momo was Philipp’s cat as a child.  Momo lived in Germany, but also accompanied the family when they went on holiday in Ibiza.  There, Momo was violently harassed by the local crows, who dived and pecked at his head every time he snuck out of the house.

This continued for some time until Momo decided that enough was enough and, essentially, snapped.

Philipp remembers coming home from town to a scene of carnage he had never been exposed to in his life.  Dead crows were scattered throughout the yard.  In his murderous frenzy Momo had dragged the bloody bodies across the porch, leaving a bright red trail of fresh blood.

“Murderer!” screamed Philipp’s mother, Birgit, as she rushed the children into the house.  Murderer.

After the killing spree, no crow bothered to dive at Momo and he began competing with the feral cats in the area.  Philipp kept Momo until age twelve, when Momo went to live with the neighbors in the Arabella Park neighborhood of Munich.

Although Momo’s demise is unknown, the loss that Philipp felt when Momo went away was akin to the death of the feline killer.  In the print below, I imagine the death of Momo and how Philipp would have felt had he witnessed the revenge of the crows.

Although the scene occurs in Spain, the crows speak German because I relate the German language to Philipp’s life before his relocation to the United States.  I appear at the bottom of the print emerging from a compass of sorts, facing East from the West side of the world.  Foreshadowing Philipp’s eventual emigration to the United States and empathizing with him on his losses–real and imagined.

The composition is based on a Medeival German print of the Christ child comforting the lamb.  The birds in the original composition looked like gossipy, conniving little creatures and reminded me of the mean crows that used to pick on pre-bloodthirsty Momo.  And thus, a print is made.

Below, see the block as it appears before being printed.  I will post the final print tomorrow.

A Tribute to Jose Guadalupe Posada: Round 2

4 Jan

It’s that time of year again!  Time to honor the “Father of Mexican Printmaking,” Jose Guadalupe Posada.

Jose Posada was born on February 2, 1852 in Aguascalientes.  In the short, 61 years that Posada lived, he produced tens of thousands of images for newspapers, chapbooks and songbooks.  The Center for Southwest Research in New Mexico alone holds almost 400 of Posada’s images in its digital collection!

Beginning as a lithographer, Posada is credited with inventing the zinc relief method, in which he drew directly onto a plate with greasy ink and then submerged the plate in an acid bath.  The result is a relief etching (similar to a linocut or woodcut) made of metal.  It is suggested that he developed this method in order to work more quickly and freely.  In fact, in the Manuel MANILLA monograph, Jean Charlot states that the older engraver was “no match for vigor of Guadalupe Posadas,” (sic) a younger, faster artist.

The retirement of Manilla left Posada as the master of the broadside, working for Vanegas Arroyo to produce the “penny presses” so popular during the time of the revolution.  Through these leaflets, Posada mocked the ruling class, politicians and those who thought themselves to be beyond reproach.  His relentless and irreverent humor was later noted by Andre Breton to be, “the triumph of humor in its pure and full state.”  Breton compared Posada’s humor to Spain’s Francisco de Goya (see Los Caprichos) and France’s Honore Daumier.

Posada’s populist humor and sensibility resulted in the production of one of our most popular current pop culture icons:  La Calavera Catrina.  All over the world, this female dandy (also known as La Pelona, La Calaca–see this loteria game for more pseudonyms) can be recognized as the face of Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), reminding us that–rich or poor–death is the great equalizer.

Despite his notoreity among artists and printmakers, and his influence on popular culture, Posada–and the Latin American tradition of Printmaking in general–remains unknown to most people.

In fact, even the book Prints and People:  A Social History of Printed Pictures, a venerable “Who’s Who” of populist printmakers includes Posada as the sole representative of Latin American Printmaking.  It states that, ” Mexican worked lacked interest until…the Revolution…released the only vivid personality among popular printmakers, a self-taught Indian, Guadalupe Posada.  This heir to the sanguinary promptness of the Aztecs modernized their lurid humor in ballad sheets of throat cutting and the firing squad and Halloween broadsides of skeletal highjinks.”

We know now, with the release of the Manuel Manilla Monograph, of course that this statement is not wholly true.  And, if one is familiar with Latin American Art at all, one knows that the tradition did not die along with Posada, nor was it focused merely in Mexico*.

Today, Printmaking continues to be the media of choice amongst artists who wish to disseminate their work on a large scale.  Prints are relatively inexpensive (compared to “one-of-a-kind” objects such as paintings) and easily reproducible, thus allowing the artist to spread the word to a wide audience.

In honor of this legacy, in honor of the enduring process of printmaking which traveled from Asia to the Old World and then crossed into the New World–being altered, modified and synthesized as it fell into the hands of a mestizo man named Jose Guadalupe Posada–The Museum of Latin American Art is proud to present it’s second annual “Tribute to Jose Guadalupe Posada Printmaking Series”

A Tribute to Jose Guadalupe Posada Printmaking Series

Two-Session Series: January 9th & January 23rd from 12-4 p.m. (participants must register for both workshops)

Instructor: Gabriela Martinez

Fees: $40 for the entire series/members  $50 for the entire series/non-members.

Materials included.

To register go to the MOLAA Website.

*One very Mexican organization (which also included Americans Pablo O’Higgins and Elizabeth Catlett) is the Taller de Grafica Popular, established in 1938.  This collective included both humorous and not-so-humorous artists and strove to continue the critique established by Posada.  In South America,journals like Aumata featured the writings of Jose Carlos Mariategui as well as prints by artists such as Jose Sabogal.  The indigenistas, among them Eduardo Kingman and Oswaldo Guayasamin, used prints to depict the daily lives of the Indians of South America.

Two-Person Exhibition at La Passarelle, Institut Universitaire de Formation des Maitres

25 Oct

From November 9-28, La Passarelle at Institut Universitaire de Formation des Maitres
Academie de Rouen
Haute Normandie

Will feature my work in a two-person exhibition as a part of their exhibition cycle: Corps, Identites & Impressions (Bodies, Identities & Impressions).
From September 2009 through July 2010 La Passarelle will host eleven exhibitions dedicated to exploring the body and identity through the figure.

I will exhibit along with Beatriz Mejia Krumbein (www.beatrizmejiakrumbein.com), my former professor, a good friend and an artist from Colombia.  Beatriz explores issues of psychological violence in her native Colombia, as well as restrictions placed on women because of their sex.

I will have fifteen pieces on display, ranging in size from 8″x10″-15″x22″.  My contribution to the work is to explore the identity of immigrants to the United States and the influence of the domestic culture (in this case Peru and Mexico–where my parents were born) and its synthesis with the public/dominant culture of the United States.

Our exhibition coincides with a conference on Immigration. According to the catalog:

A l’occasion de la huitième édition des journées culturelles anglophones consacrée cette année aux questions d’immigration et d’intégration aux Etas-Unis et notamment en Californie, l’IUFM accueille deux artistes d’origine latino-américaineinstallées dans la région de Los Angelès.

Roughly translated: On the occasion of the 8th annual English Cultural Conference devoted to questions of immigration and integration into the United States, including California, the IUFM welcomes two artists of Latin American Origin who now work in the Los Angeles area.

This is how my bio appears:

Gabriela Martinez est née en 1977 à Los Angelès. Elle s’occupede l’éducation artistique au Museum of Latin American Art Long Beach-Californie. Elle enseigne aussi les arts plastiques au Los Angeles County High School for the Arts. Elle raconte son histoire personnelle et familiale entre ses deux cultures sud et nord américaine. C’est dans ses souvenirs d’enfance qu’elle puise son inspiration.

(Gabriela Martinez was born in 1977 in Los Angeles.  She is in charge of Art Education at the Museum of Latin American in Long Beach, California.  She also teaches Fine ARts at the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts.  She recounts her personal and familial history between the two cultures of North and South America.  She draws her inspiration from these childhood memories)
(That term studying French in Paris came in handy!)

Contributors include: Christian Sauvan Magnet (Director of Galerie le Pictorium of Paris), Marc Donnadieu (Director of FRAC of Haute-Normandie), Yoland Simon (Poet, Dramatist and Writer) and Catherine Scott (L.A. based independent consultant and art representative).

The exhibitions address issues of the body & identity via the figure. As far as I can tell from the catalog, most of the artists are photographers and video artists, with a couple of painters, sculptors and one printmaker (me).

The other artists involved in the various cycles are:

Pierre Olingue
Daniel Mayar & Amanda Pinto da Silva
Andre Roques
Laure Delamotte-Legrand
Patrick Gilberstein
FRAC Haute-Normandie
Christian Torelli
Chantal Prevost
Sabine Meier
Bernard Clarisse

This is my first exhibition in Europe and my third exhibition outside of the United States (Former international exhibitions include South Korea and China)

To learn more about La Passarelle and the IUFM: