Axis Mundo: Queer Networks in Chicano LA
Axis Mundo: Queer Networks in Chicano LA is a traveling exhibition that explores the intersections among a network of over fifty artists. This historical exhibition is the first of its kind to excavate histories of experimental art practice, collaboration, and exchange by a group of Los Angeles-based queer Chicanx artists between the late 1960s and early 1990s. While the exhibition’s heart looks at the work of Chicanx artists in Los Angeles, it reveals extensive new research into the collaborative networks that connected these artists to one another and to artists from many different communities, cultural backgrounds, sexual orientations, and international urban centers, thus deepening and expanding narratives about the development of the Chicano Art Movement, performance art, and queer aesthetics and practices.
As referenced in its title, the exhibition also sheds light onto the work of Edmundo “Mundo” Meza (1955–1985), a central figure within his generation. Primarily a painter, but also known for his performances, design, and installation work, Meza collaborated with many of his peers towards developing new art practices amid emerging movements of political and social justice activism.
Axis Mundo presents over two decades of work—painting, performance ephemera, print material, video, music, fashion, and photography—in the context of significant artistic and cultural movements: mail art and artist correspondences; the rise of Chicanx, LGBTQ, and feminist print media; the formation of alternative spaces; fashion culture; punk music and performance; and artistic responses to the AIDS crisis. As a result of thorough curatorial research, Axis Mundo marks the first historical consideration and significant showing of many of these pioneering artists’ work.
Bertha and Karl Leubsdorf Gallery
132 East 68th Street
New York, NY
205 Hudson Gallery
205 Hudson Street
New York, NY
Through August 19
Thomas Allen Harris at Hunter East Harlem Gallery
Artist and Filmmaker Thomas Allen Harris is in collaboration with students from the Hunter College IMA MFA program to transform Hunter East Harlem Gallery into an open-forum classroom. During the months of July and August 2018, the students will cull material directly from the surrounding neighborhood, and each student will perform a site-based investigation using historical visual materials like family albums, vintage photographs, archival film, and personal narratives to develop a project. The final outcome will be a collaborative exhibition debuting inside the gallery during the month of September, opening on August 30, 2018.
The workshop curriculum is based on Thomas Allen Harris’ practice which utilizes the family album as a community organizing tool, inviting audiences to share personal histories through close looking of a photograph. These archival materials illuminate stories of the neighborhood’s narratives giving shape to a collective memory and a people’s history. In tandem with the participating students, Allen Harris will conduct his own investigation of the Harlem-based First AME Church: Bethel creating a visual dialogue where cultural, political, and spiritual themes collide. The project disrupts notions of art, history, and religion as monolithic institutions by examining the relational and communal aspects of worship and community sites.
Hunter East Harlem Gallery
2180 3rd Avenue at 119th Street
New York, NY
Workshop begins July 11, 2018
Exhibition opens August 30, 2018