Sandy Rodriguez

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What Is My Work About? 

I paint the urban landscapes in moments of transformation; communities in order and disorder. I paint fires, fog, tear gas, and persistence of place in oil on canvas. My work is about physical and cultural regeneration. The most recent series of works are history paintings of communities in resistance in United States and Mexico made from August to December of 2014 in Leimert Park, CA.

 

Artist Statement

Tear Gas Image 1-4

A series of thinly painted tear gas clouds illuminated by street lights, headlights from military tanks and police vehicles on black canvas. Delicately painted power lines and fast food chain signage against a matte black night sky frame the scene in “TEAR GAS no. 2” and “TEAR GAS no. 1.” Suggestions of asphalt in the foreground are laid in with a dry bristle brush with cancer causing cadmium reds  and yellows.  The dissipating clouds painted in cobalt violet, blue  and white become translucent in areas hovering in the night. The contrast of the material; oil paint on the matte gesso ground is part of the tension of the picture.

I wondered how tear gas; a chemical weapon banned in war could be used against an unarmed civilian population under curfew in Ferguson. I wondered about how the police arrested and threaten more journalists in mid august of 2014. I wondered what the next days, weeks, months would bring.

It reminded me of 1992. I painted this series of works in hope we wouldn’t forget this moment, his story, our story.  I hoped these objects would seduce the viewer with the surface, material and color oil on canvas. I wanted to give the viewer just enough to recall past experiences and prompt a dialogue between viewer and object, subject and history. A prompt for conversations, exhibits, panels, workshops, curriculum and media. A newspaper sized primary source.

Fog Image 4-8

A series of thinly painted coastal nocturnes in heavy fog. Haloes of lights, suggestions of palm trees, evidence coastal communities and  structures and  illuminated by sodium, mercury vapor neon and led lights.

Fire Image 9- 12

A series of heavily painted scenes from international and national news about the 43 missing students in Guerrero, Mexico. “FIRE No.2” and “FIRE No. 3” are a conceived of a pair of paintings of the night fire set to the doors to the National Palace in Mexico City.  Three of this series  are painted on hand ground cochineal pigment I procured last fall in  Oaxaca during Day of the Dead. “FIRE No.1” depicts a scene inspired by a news  image of a burning vehicle that blazed between protesting students and riot police after it was set on fire by protesting college students outside of the Guerrero state capital building in Chilpancingo, Mexico, Oct. 13, 2014. “FIRE- No. 4″ is a large history painting of the burning of an effigy of President Pena Nieto in the Zocalo with thousands of demonstrators recording the event with cell phone cameras outside the National Palace. The site of the 1968, the Tlatelolco student massacre.

I wondered about the 43 Mexican teachers college students who disappeared in southern Mexico in September who were abducted by police on order of a local mayor. I wondered how long before the information was discovered and disclosed as to what actually happened. I wondered what was next. This series is in progress and moving toward abstraction.

Persistance Image 13-19

These oil painting are urban landscapes of Los Angeles in moments of transformation. ” PERSISTENCE-Echo Park”, “PERSISTENCE -Rosslyn Million Dollar Fireproof Hotel” and PERSISTENCE- Degnan and W 41st Street, “PERSISTENCE- Degnan and MLK Blvd.”, ” PERSISTENCE -Art + Practice” are sites of significant cultural production. The final image  of this group, No. 19 “Downtown Muse” is a view of the skyline from the arts district. This February, I was one of four artists invited to create a series with master printer Joe Apuche  at Self Help Graphics in East L.A.

Billboard Image 20

In 2013, my painting “Fire Tornado” was featured in “Freeway Studies #1 in This Side of the 405″ Billboard Project for Ben Maltz Gallery.”Fire Tornado” is a loosely painted view of a charred Los Angeles hillside in silhouette with palms and disintegrating eucalyptus trees that stand in sharp contrast with cadmium orange and yellow flames set against the smoky twilight sky. The billboard was situated above a Starbucks and located at a very busy intersection near the 405 and 90 freeway entrances. At dawn and dusk it disappeared into the silhouette of telephone poles, cable lines, palm trees, and neighboring lots under construction; thus, Fire Tornado became part of the landscape in which it was set.

CV

E D U C A T I O N
1997
B.F.A. California Institute of the ArtsP U B L I C A R T P R O J E C T S
2014
“aMUSEd: Paintings of the Arts District Inspired by Downtown Muse”, Art Squared Gallery in Pershing Square, LA, CA
2013
“Freeway Studies #1 This Side of the 405 Billboard Project”, Ben Maltz Gallery, Otis College of Art and Design, LA, CA
2012
“Opening Night” muralist with Barbara Carrasco, John Valadez and others. America Tropical Interpretive Center, LA, CAS O L O E X H I B I T I O N S
2012
“Calle Sal Si Puedes and other Places She‚Äôs Lived”, Lyceum Theater Gallery, San Diego, CA
2010
“Los Angeles Landscapes: Sandy Rodriguez”, Two Roads Theater Gallery, Studio City, CA
2008
La Retrospectivita: 1998-2008, Underground Gallery,Silverlake, CA
2007
“Burn Hollywood Burn”, Underground Gallery, Silverlake, CA
“Unearthed”, Pasadena City College Library, Pasadena, CAS E L E C T E D G R O U P M U S E U M E X H I B I T I O N S
2014
“Chicanitas: Small Paintings from the Cheech Marin Collection” The exhibition showcases 71 paintings by 29 painters. The exhibition has been on view at the following venues: Museum of Contemporary-San Diego, CA (2014), Whatcom Museum-Bellingham, Washington (2013), Ellen No√´l Art Museum-Odessa, Texas (2013), Staniar Gallery, Washington & Lee University-Lexington, Virginia, (2013), University of Wyoming Art Museum‚ÄìLaramie, Wyoming,(2013), Museum of Monterey-Monterey, California (2012), Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame-Notre Dame, Indiana (2011), Mesa Arts Center Museum-Mesa, Arizona (2011)
2012
“Greeting from Underwater: Chicanos of the Sea”- Changarrito: M√°ximo Gonz√°lez: Playful, Craft and Folk Art Museum, LA, CA
2010
“1000 Journals “, Skirball Cultural Center, LA, CAS E L E C T E D G R O U P G A L L E R Y E X H I B I T I O N S
2014
“Annual Print Fair & Exhibition”, Self Help Graphics, LA, CA
“MUSE-ings: Snapshots of the Arts District”, ArtShareLA, LA,CA
“One for the Road”, Hudson Link, Pacific Design Center, LA, CA
2013
“Catrina Ball”, Orange County Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Ana, CA
“Getting off the Ground”, Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro, CA
2012
“Bloodlines: Three Generations – Sandy Rodriguez, Guadalupe Rodriguez and Aurora Perez”, Plaza de la Raza, Boathouse Gallery, LA, CA
“MACLA 4rth Chicana/o Biennial”, MACLA, San Jose, CA
2011
“Navigating L.A.”, The Studio for Southern California History, LA, CA
2010
“39NOW!”, d.e.n. contemporary Pacific Design Center, West Hollywood, CA
“Calavera Fashion Show”, Tropico de Nopal Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
“Paper Trail”, Happy Gallery, Hollywood, CA
“S.A.S.S. Attack!”, Sophia Louisa Projects, Miracle Mile, Los Angeles, CA
“Selections from the Collection”, Underground Gallery, Silverlake, CA
2009
“Doomsday Kiss”, Bootleg Theater, Echo Park, CA
“Los Inbetweens: Artists Sin Barrios”, Ave 50 Studios, Highland Park, CA
“Dibujos: Emergency Landing”, Tropico de Nopal, LA, CA
“The Women Artists on Immigration Crossing Borders, Confronting Barriers, Bridging Identities
Juried by Alma Ruiz, MOCA, Korean Cultural Center Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
“Beauty Marks”, Underground Gallery, Silverlake, CA
“No Solo Para Rom√°nticos”, Brooklyn and Boyle, Boyle Heights, CA

S E L E C T E D L E C T U R E S A N D P R E S E N T A T I O N S
2014
” Black and Brown Lives Matter: Studio 75″, Sandy Rodriguez & Isabelle Lutterodt, Loyola Marymount University
“Mural Making and Mentorship”, Sandy Rodriguez & Barbara Carrasco, Tomas Rivera Conference, University of California Riverside, Riverside CA
2012
“Ten Years of Dia De Los Muertos Collaborations: Guadalupe Rodriguez and Sandy Rodriguez”, Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles, CA
“Welcome to L.A.: Cultural, Civic, and Community Practices in the City of Dreams”, Guest Lecturer, Claremont Graduate School, Claremont, CA
2011
“Conversations: Sandy Rodriguez and Linda Vallejo, moderated by Bill Moreno, ‚Navigating L.A.‚ exhibition, Studio for Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
“Latina Art”, Sandy Rodriguez, Sandra de la Loza, and Poli Marchal Loyola Marymount University, Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Center for the Study of Los Angeles, moderated by Karen Mary Davalos.

S E L E C T E D P U B L I C A T I O N S

Guest Editorial at KCET has Sandy Rodriguez write about the artists, including herself, who worked on the interior mural at The América Tropical Interpretive Center.(2013)
http://www.kcet.org/socal/departures/landofsunshine/writing-on-the-wall/six-and-a-half-weeks-the-making-of-opening-night-for-the-america-tropical-interpretive-center.html

Rodriguez, Eugene, the Chicana/o Biennial, Moviemento de Arte y Cultura Latino Americana, Sac Jose 2012

Studio Visit with Sandy Rodriguez (2012)
https://blogs.otis.edu/freewaystudies/this-side-of-the-405/sandy-rodriguez/

Bliss, Sharon E., Prison/Culture. City Lights Foundation Books,Francisco, 2010

Ruiz, Alma. Women Artists on Immigration Crossing Borders, Confronting Barriers Bridging Identities, Blurb, Los Angeles,

Changes in Landscape, Ed Fuentes, (2008)
http://viewfromaloft.typepad.com/viewfromaloft/2008/01/cho-lo-sphere-1.html

AWARDS AND RESIDENCIES
2014-2015
AIR Artist in Residence, Art+Practice Foundation

For more information see www.sandyrodriguez.org