Locals Only, now on view at Phoenix Art Museum
, showcases the work of 12 Chicano and Latino artists currently living and working in metropolitan Phoenix. Their contemporary works explore issues of identity, tensions between high and low culture and a broad range of artistic styles. Included in the show are paintings, sculptures, installations, prints, and photographs by Claudio Dicochea, Fausto Fernandez, Luis Gutierrez, Annie Lopez, Melissa Martinez, Monica Aissa Martinez, Martin Moreno, Hector Ruiz, Roy Wasson Valle and DOSE, Lalo Cota and Mykil ZEPata.
Locals Only is a platform for the distinct voices of a dozen artists and a snapshot of the diverse types of work being created by Chicano and Latino artists here in the Valley, commented Sara Cochran, Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art, Phoenix Art Museum . The artists careers span over three decades. Their experiences, interests and backgrounds are very different. Some have formal art educations, some are self taught. The show charts shifts between generations as well as between conceptual and representational approaches to art-making, but it demonstrates that divides are not always so clear. Identity both personal and social is essential to much of the work. Many artists also demonstrate a keen interest in revising art history and working with a diversity of popular culture mass media, social customs, traditional forms and comics.
Locals Only was organized against the backdrop of the museums showing of the internationally traveling exhibition Phantom Sightings: Art After the Chicano Movement. Organized by the LACMA, Phantom Sightings is the first comprehensive consideration of Chicano art in almost two decades and will be on view at the Museum through September 20, 2009. Locals Only explores how Arizona artists deal with parallel themes and issues.
Through Phantom Sightings and Locals Only, we have an opportunity to connect with the exciting work of a broad range of artists working locally and nationally, commented James Ballinger, The Sybil Harrington Director, Phoenix Art Museum . We are also delighted to use this occasion to welcome particularly the local Chicano and Hispanic communities to the museum and look forward to the conversation these two thought-provoking shows will generate.