POSTED BY REGINA CANTU
ChicaChic, an art exhibit displaying the works of five leading Chicana visual artists will be showcased at the California Institute of Integral Studies (CIIS). ChicaChic comprises the concepts, themes, and iconography of the Chicano civil rights movement of the 1960s and 1970s but “reflects a world that is drastically changed,” says Deirdre Visser, arts curator at CIIS. The exhibit is the culmination of years of planning.“These women were raised in a different era, and ask different questions,” added Visser. The works in the show include a large canvas by Ana Teresa Fernandez depicting a woman “washing” the beach at the U.S.-Mexican border with her hair; it’s a striking image that demands both that we engage with the current debates over immigration, and the politics of women and labor.
Alongside Fernandez, ChicaChic features the work of Angelica Muro, Mitsy Ávila Ovalles, Favianna Rodriguez, andShizu Saldamando. The work of these five artists varies greatly, but they all are responding visually to the shifting needs of their communities in novel ways. The exhibit is guest-curated by Raquel de Anda, formerly of Galería de la Raza. “ChicaChic is about stepping beyond the boundaries of identity, challenging stereotypes about what it means to be Chicana,” says de Anda. “It’s about the fluidity of identity and the need for new kinds of images in a fast-paced, media-saturated society.”
As Dorotea Reyna, CIIS Director of Development describes it, “ChicaChic is also a way to represent who we are at CIIS. With a ethnically diverse student body, CIIS feels that ChicaChic is an ideal exhibition to highlight our diversity, expand our arts programming, and further project our voice into Bay Area Latino communities.”