Victor Estrada: Purple Mexican @ ArtCenter, Pasadena
ArtCenter Exhibitions is pleased to announce Victor Estrada: Purple Mexican, a survey of works by the Los Angeles-based artist, Victor Estrada. In a career spanning more than 30 years, Victor Estrada has produced paintings, drawings, sculptures and installations that deftly navigate the realms of pop and conceptual art. A consummate Angelino, his work is informed by the unique cultural landscape of the sprawling metropolis and the Southwest—1980s Los Angeles and South Bay punk rock; Chicano art, music and politics; the art collectives ASCO and Los Four; and the enduring socio-political ramifications surrounding the US/Mexico border. Estrada congeals this and more in his surreal forms, pushing the boundaries of abstraction while also teasing the viewer with eruptions and viscera of his own identity. His work challenges us as it upends prevalent systems of control, oozing its way into our collective consciousnesses as a byproduct of natural, chaotic and complex forms of subsistence in an illogical, hostile world.
Born in Los Angeles and a member of the student activist group MEChA—founded in the late ‘60s as the Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlán—Estrada went on to earn his BFA and MFA at ArtCenter College of Design. He came to widespread recognition with his audacious sculpture Baby/Baby (1991) in the legendary 1992 exhibition Helter Skelter: L.A. Art in the 1990s at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Since then, Estrada has continued to build upon his signature style: fantastical landscapes, creatures and bodily forms that explore eroticism, identity, estrangement and belonging.
Victor Estrada: Purple Mexican focuses on a unique and previously unseen comprehensive view of the artist’s oeuvre, presenting more than 40 intimately scaled drawings, a selection of large paintings created during the past decade, and a major recent sculpture. This is the first exhibition to substantially survey the artist’s oeuvre.