Carlos Almaraz: A Life Recalled

A tribute to the late L.A. artist through survey exhibition, theatrical performance and community discussions, Aug 25 - Dec 8

By LatinoLA Contributor
Published on LatinoLA: July 29, 2012

Carlos Almaraz: A Life Recalled

Carlos Almaraz: A Life Recalled, pays tribute to the late Los Angeles visual artist through survey exhibition, theatrical performance and community discussions. Presented at the Vincent Price Art Museum, Aug. 25-Dec. 8, 2012.

Carlos Almaraz: A Life Recalled draws from those who cared for and knew the artist best. Visitors travel through Almaraz's life from his earliest years in Mexico, childhood in East LA, travails in New York, an awakening to the Chicano Movement and participation in the local art collective, Los Four. Ephemeral materials will offer a glimpse of Almaraz's personal life as a friend, husband and father; his recognition as a rising Los Angeles studio art star; and AIDS victim.

The art showcase runs at the Vincent Price Art Museum (VPAM) located on the East Los Angeles College (ELAC) campus Aug. 25-Dec. 8, 2012.

It is organized by Karen Rapp, museum director, along with Dan Guerrero, life-long friend and Elsa Flores Almaraz, acclaimed Chicana artist and Carlos' widow.

"This is an historically important celebration that will document Carlos' evolution as an artist beginning in our days growing up in East Los Angeles as Charles and Eddie," said Guerrero "He always wanted to be an artist and I'm very proud that my collection of never-exhibited pieces will trace those early first steps. And I'm appreciative of all who have generously added their collections to the exhibition."

Carlos Almaraz (b. 1941, Mexico City, Mexico ‘«Ű 1989, Los Angeles, CA) is a legendary figure in the Los Angeles art community, particularly within the Chicano art scene that developed during the 1970s. However, the social activist and practicing studio artist, transcended identification with one group.

Carlos Almaraz: A Life Recalled, features fine art paintings, drawings, and prints, as well as biographical materials including rare photographs, personal letters and journals. The exhibition will consist of more than 100 selected artworks and ephemeral materials. Many pieces have never before been seen by the public.

Several of the artworks in the show are instantly recognizable as a signature "Almaraz" ‘«Ű vibrant depictions of car crashes West Coast Crash (1982), and melancholy scenes of Echo Park, The Bridge in Deep Magenta (1984). Other more intimate scenes explore the artist's family, Domestic Scene (1981), and childhood friendships, Portrait of Eddie G. (c.1958). Throughout the show, themes that resonated with Almaraz ‘«Űsexuality, existentialism, and death--are depicted in various media. Two large-scale murals completed by Almaraz are also included in the show: A United Farm Workers commissioned banner circa 1975, and Sunset on the Fig (1981), a painting created for the Murals of Aztlan show at the Craft and Folk Art Museum.

Lenders to the show include personal friends and collaborators Elsa Flores Almaraz, Ken Brecher and Rebecca Rickman, Barbara Carrasco, Roberto Gil de Montes, Dan Guerrero, Judithe Hernandez, Louie Perez, Richard Read, Frank Romero, John Valadez, Lupe and Luis Valdez, among others. Carlos Almaraz: A Life Recalled is supported in part by AltaMed Health Services Corporation.

Related Public Programs and Events:
‘«ů Opening Reception
Saturday, Sept. 8, 2012; 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.-Large Gallery, Vincent Price Art Museum

‘«ů ?ŪGaytino! Mariachi to Merman. Sondheim to Cesar Chavez
Saturday, Oct. 6, at 7 p.m. -ELAC Performing Arts Center, P2 Proscenium Theatre; Tickets: $10 at door.

?ŪGaytino! A live, solo show written and performed by Dan Guerrero will be performed in conjunction with the exhibition. The autobiographical play with music is driven by Dan's lifelong friendship with Carlos and by Dan's father, Chicano music legend, Lalo Guerrero.

?ŪGaytino! has played to rave reviews at New York's iconic Zipper Theatre, the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC and in more than a dozen cities from Miami to Santa Fe where Guerrero's performance was introduced by Governor Bill Richardson.
www.gaytino.com and www.danguerrero.com

‘«ů Community Panels

The Artist as Friend
Saturday, Nov. 10; 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.-Lecture Hall, Vincent Price Art Museum
Join Barbara Carrasco, Richard Duardo, Dan Guerrero (moderator), Frank Romero, and John Valadez as they reflect on Almaraz's friendship and influence.

The Artist in Context
Saturday, Dec. 1; 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.-Lecture Hall, Vincent Price Art Museum
Join Max Benavidez (moderator), Karen Mary Davalos, Patrick Ela, and Suzanne Muchnic for a discussion on Almaraz's career in critical context of the past and present.

All events are free and open to the public unless otherwise stated.

Vincent Price Art Museum (VPAM) on the campus of East Los Angeles College (ELAC) has been open in its brand new facility for just over one year. At 40,000 square feet, it is the largest museum serving the San Gabriel Valley. And, as part the new Performing and Fine Arts Center on campus, VPAM is dedicated to the presentation of significant and wide-ranging exhibitions that directly benefit ELAC and its surrounding communities.

Email: vincentpriceartmuseum@elac.edu | Web: http://vincentpriceartmuseum.org
Tel: (323) 265-8841 | Fax: (323) 260-8173 | Admission is free

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