FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The J. Paul Getty Museum Presents See What You Mean: An Evening of
Insurrections with Harry Gamboa Jr.
Building on the pop-political gestures, multimedia spectacles, and transgressive images that Gamboa has created to interpret the contemporary urban Chicano experience, this unique evening presents unexpected moments alongside music, art-making, and video to honor the empowering and liberating spirit of his vision.
Chulita Vinyl Club, the all-female, all-vinyl DJ collective for self-identifying women of color, takes over the Courtyard Stage, while Boyle Heights’ community art center Self-Help Graphics leads a screen printing workshop to make signs for what Gamboa calls a “Counter-Intuitive Protest.” Acrobatic sign-spinners transform street-corner advertisements into a different kind of messaging, as poetic wordplay infiltrates a variety of surfaces, from the floors and walls to wearable giveaways. Performative actions by painter, graphic artist, muralist, and former member of Asco, Willie Herron and by musician, performance artist, poet, and activist known for headlining the eponymous Ruben & The Jets, Rubén Funkahuatl Guevara will also take place.
Amidst it all, a whimsically large and unruly game of hopscotch will play out across the signature grid surface of the Getty Center, referencing both Harry Gamboa Jr.’s writings and the surrealist Latin American novel Hopscotch by Julio Cortazar. This theatrically expanded take on a schoolyard pastime is one of several insurrections aiming to upend the status quo and build an experience that, like Gamboa’s work, defies easy categorization.
Preceding these activities, Chon A. Noriega, director of UCLA’s Chicano Studies Research Center, will lead Gamboa in conversation with artists of varied generations who have made Southern California’s Latin American experience the fabric of their work, including Guadalupe Rosales, the artist and social archivist behind the popular Veteranas and Rucas Instagram account, which collects family and found photographs of women and disappearing subcultures in Southern California, and painter Ramiro Gomez, whose work documents the contributions of laborers and caregivers so often erased from the polished images of luxury homes, curated landscapes, and glossy advertisements.
“See What You Mean, is a visual narrative that is enhanced by the participant-observer to include ideas and actions that respond to the expansive contemporary urban environment of Los Angeles,” said Harry Gamboa Jr.
This event will also celebrate the release of an ongoing series of fotonovelas created by Gamboa as part of the Getty Artists Project. For his project, See What You Mean, Gamboa collaborated with over 40 young adults and college students from across Los Angeles to create a series of satirical and provocative fotonovelas –or photo-novels. Incorporating artworks from the Getty collection and photographs from impromptu performances staged throughout Los Angeles, the fotonovelas examine the shifting realities of power, education, race, culture, access, celebrity and wealth. Visitors can participate in a live fotonovela shoot directed by Gamboa, that will be live-streamed during the event.
Gamboa’s project resonates with the themes of Pacific Standard Time: LA/ LA and An Evening of Insurrections with Harry Gamboa, Jr. will be held during West L.A. & Valley Free Day. Visit the West LA and San Fernando Valley Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA partners to experience the ancient Americas, Cuba today, murals of Los Angeles, the coast of Brazil, and more. Shop at select museum stores with a special Saturday discount.
About The Getty Artists Program
The Getty Artist Program (GAP) is part of the J. Paul Getty Museum’s ongoing invitation to contemporary artists to engage with the Getty’s collection and programs. Previous Getty Artists Program participants include Mark Bradford (2010), Sam Durant (2013), and Barbara Kruger (2015).
About Harry Gamboa Jr.
Harry Gamboa Jr. (American, born 1951) is a Chicano essayist, photographer, educator, director and performance artist living in Los Angeles. Gamboa’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally at several museums including the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA); Tate Liverpool, England; Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico City; Centre Pompidou, France; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York. He co-founded the East L.A. conceptual-performance art group ASCO and founded Virtual Vérité, an ensemble performance troupe. He has taught at various universities and art institutions including University of California, Los Angeles; University of California, San Diego; Otis College of Art and Design; Parsons School of Design, New York; and is currently a professor at California State University, Northridge and the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts).
The J. Paul Getty Museum collects Greek and Roman antiquities, European paintings, drawings, manuscripts, sculpture and decorative arts to 1900, as well as photographs from around the world to the present day. The Museum’s mission is to display and interpret its collections, and present important loan exhibitions and publications for the enjoyment and education of visitors locally and internationally. This is supported by an active program of research, conservation, and public programs that seek to deepen our knowledge of and connection of works of art.
Additional information is available at www.getty.edu.
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