Sergio Torres – Torres

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Artist Statement

From wrestlers and rock stars to pre-Columbian tribes, I appropriate and juxtapose different mask images to reveal the complexities of Mexican/American identities. Referencing myths originating on both sides of the border and using historical photographs, my work shows the limitations of how various groups of people are depicted. My Mexican heritage (a hybrid of cultures) and my American experience have often clashed, leading me to ask: how is difference obliterated in the construction of identities that become stereotyped? My work speaks to the problems of representing entire groups of subjects who forfeit their personal identities for some broader form of representation.

Like the Olmecs’ transformational jaguar, the photocopy-transfer method I use allows me to declare multiple identities. I begin by photocopying photographic images. In order to transfer the toner, the photocopy must be “glued” face-down onto its substrate, sandwiching the ink (the image) between substrate and paper. Through a process of scrubbing the paper pulp, the toner is transferred—image reversed—onto the substrate. This process is repeated until the image is saturated and resembles a print. The materiality of the work speaks to my preoccupation with the nature of the photographic image, which appears as an objective analogue of reality and simultaneously represents the subjectivity of the person behind the viewfinder. Given that an objective representation of an event is impossible, the works use an act of masking, layering, and gridding images to create visually complex dialogues between self and other, old and new, Mexican and American.


2000  MFA UCLA Department of Art, Painting and Drawing Specialization
1995  BFA California Institute of the Arts
1992 AA Ventura College

Selected Exhibitions

Punk Povera
WUHO Gallery, Los Angeles


François Ghebaly Gallery, Los Angeles


Fellow Travelers
Durden & Ray Gallery, Los Angeles


A Flag For Every Occasion
Wonderland Art Space, Copenhagen, Denmark
The Real Show (title pending)
Summercamp Project, Los Angeles
Mexicali Biennial 09/10 [Traveling Show] Ben Maltz Gallery, Otis College of Art, Los Angeles


Mexicali Biennial 09/10
La Casa del Tunel, Tijuana, Mexico
Mexicali Biennial 09/10
Sala de Arte de la UABC Mexicali, Mexico
Through the Looking Glass
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas


Core Artists in Residence Exhibition
The Glassell School of Art and MFAH, Houston


Five Gestures
Sixteen:One, Santa Monica, California
De Pasada Por Los Angeles
Atelier als Supermedium, The Hague, Netherlands


Building Up From The Left Over
Phantom Galleries, Los Angeles, California
MAK Center Artists and Architects in Residency
Mackey Apartments, Los Angeles, California


Whitney ISP Final Projects
New York, New York


Measures of Time
Occidental College Weingart Galleries, Los Angeles, California


The Soul Returns to the Body
Postartum Gallery, Long Beach, California


Point Blank
Charim Klocker Gallery, Vienna, Austria

Curatorial Projects


De Pasada Por Los Angeles
Atelier Als Supermedium, The Hague, Netherlands
1999  The 1999 Wight Biennial Exhibition
The New Wight Gallery, UCLA



Core Residency Program, The Museum of Fine Arts Houston


Independent Study Program, The Whitney Museum of American Art
1996  Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture


2011  US Artists Project Grant
2008  Core Artist in Residency Fellowship The Eliza Randall Prize
2007  Core Artist in Residence Fellowship, Museum of Fine Arts Houston
2004  Van Lier Foundation Fellowship
1999  Feitelson Arts Foundation Award
1998  Feitelson Arts Foundation Award
1996  Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture Full Scholarship
1994  Getty Summer Internship Grant
1992 -94     California Institute of the Arts Fellowships


2009  Artists in Residence (Yearbook), The Glassell School of Art and The Museum of    Fine Arts, Houston (text and image)

2008  Artists in Residence (Yearbook), The Glassell School of Art and The Museum of    Fine Arts, Houston (text and image)

1999  The 1999 Wight Biennial Exhibition Catalog (Co-curator and contributing essay)
The New Wight Gallery, UCLA

Selected Bibliography

2008  Andrea Liu, “Core A.I.R. Exhibition,” ArtUS 23 (summer)

2007  Meredith Goldsmith, “De-centering the Historical Photograph and Imaging a Continuum of Resistance,” Core Residents Yearbook

2005  Michael Wang, Scene & Herd, (May 27)


2011  Northwestern University (Lecture and Graduate Studio Visits) Department of Art, Theory and Practice

2010  Mexicali Biennial 09/10 Panel Discussion.
The Ben Meltz Gallery at Otis College of Art, Los Angeles

2008  Contemporary Art Museum (CAM), Houston, Texas

2005  Art Center College of Art and Design, Department of Fine Art

2002  Otis College of Art, Department of Fine Art


2005  CAMEL Artist Collective Swing Space at Lower Manhattan Arts Council

1998  The New Wight Gallery Board of Directors UCLA


Museum of Fine Arts Houston and Various Private Collections