“We Are You” exhibit spotlights Latino artists

Sept. 15, 2015

Kyle Guthrie
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A Hispanic on Mars, Superman and a visual of the faces of America make up the most recent exhibit in the Galleries of Contemporary Art on campus.

The “We Are You” project spotlights the influences of race in the United States, and looks at the melting pot of cultures that make up American society.

Artist Raul Villareal, for example, tells of the lesser known relations and influences between the Latino community and American culture. He constructed an array of art that includes paintings, portraits and video exhibits.

Andrea Herrera, women’s and ethnic studies professor, worked with Villareal to bring the exhibit to UCCS.

“He told me about this exhibit,” Herrera said. “So I asked him if we could think about bringing it and he was thrilled, and of course Daisy was open to the idea so that’s how we got it here.

“[The exhibit pieces] are all by Latin American artists from different countries who are residing in the U.S. One of the ideas for this exhibit, the fundamental idea, was dealing with all the anti-Latino rhetoric around immigration.”

GOCA director Daisy McConnell said the project has been around for a while.

“Dr. Herrera brought this concept to me,” McConnell said. “This project has existed since 2005. It’s a big collective of artists all dealing with central issues relating to immigration and Latino and Latina conditions and issues in the United States.”

The exhibit features a wide variety of work.

To the left of the entrance is a plaque describing the history of the “We Are You” exhibit. A mural further in the exhibit consists of three paintings arranged to form a single piece entitled “Superman Where Are You Now.”

A painting titled “The First Mexican on Mars” by Joe Pena depicts a bearded man wearing the collar of a space suit.

On the opposite wall, Ricardo Fenseca’s “Faces of America” depicts a massive collection of American citizen’s faces framed by the head of the Statue of Liberty.

“If you want an example of a piece that particularly speaks to the themes, this one would be it,” Herrera said regarding “Faces of America.” “I think it’s very interesting to see so many points of view on who America is,” freshman Rachel Hetrick said. “It shows a diverse representation on how people think.”

The “We Are You” exhibit is on display until Oct. 11.