July 22 – August 23, 2006
Born on the gulf coast of Texas during the summer of 1975, his father worked the assembly line, and his mother worked in a local grocery store. His grandmother ran the family as the matriarch curandera. His parents chose to speak only English at home; Spanish had been beaten out of them in grade school. He prefers sushi to lengua, Ben Sherman to Dickies, Cy Twombly to Carmen Lomas Garza. In Spanish class, he got a “B”. He is chastised in church and at school as not being a real “Mexican”. He is a Coconut.
Each of the four artists chosen for this exhibition were born between 1965 and 1985, the 20-year span covered in CARA (Chicano Art: Resistance and Affirmation), the influential exhibition organized by UCLA in 1990. Each attended art schools during the 1990’s, an era often referred to as “the multicultural decade” each, however, is a part of a new generation of artists that can be described as post-ethnic. Although, you may see traces of their culture in the work, it moves beyond identity politics and narrative structures into an international art discussion with a quieting accent.
Artists included in Coconuts are Sam de la Rosa (b. 1979, Dallas, Texas, lives and works in New York), Michelle Gonzalez Valdez, “Bunnyphonic” (b. 1973, San Antonio, lives and works in San Antonio), Josh Rios (b. 1974, Corpus Christi, lives and works in Austin), Rell Ohlson (b. 1981, Las Vegas, Nevada, lives and works in Austin).