A West Coast Spotlight on Latino Artists Leads the Fall Art Season


A report by Holland Cotter for the New York Times.

Size-wise, the biggest deal of the new art season comes right at the start with “Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA,” a roundup of some 70 museum exhibitions in Los Angeles and throughout Southern California devoted to Latin American and Latino art. The chronological arc is wide, from pre-Columbian gold to contemporary performance. So is the ethnic spectrum, with surveys of Afro-Brazilian and Chinese Caribbean art, and work by artists of Japanese descent living in Lima, Peru, and Mexico City.

The influence of Mexico in Southern California, as cultural underpinning and overlay, gets close attention. Shows like “The U.S.-Mexican Border: Place, Imagination, and Possibility” tackle pressing current issues; others, like a career retrospective of the magnificent Chicana muralist Judith F. Baca, write histories long overdue. If I could see just one show, it would be “Radical Women: Latin American Art, 1960-1985” at the Hammer Museum, in which each of 116 genius artists, each in a distinctive way, dismantles the kind of social and spiritual walls the government in Washington is trying to build. (From mid-September through January.)

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