I am a queer immigrant artist-activist and scholar, currently a PhD candidate in Chicana/o Studies at UCLA. My artwork is primarily portraiture, with a focus on women and queer activists of color.
My dissertation draws on over fifteen years of contemporary Chicanx art production in the U.S. This project is a Chicana feminist analysis of the work and visual tactics of contemporary Chicanx digital activist-artists (artivists) in California from 2000-2015. During the 1960s civil rights movements, the political poster became the medium of activist-artists, specifically Black and Chicanx artists. Today, Chicanx artists use social media platforms, as tools to educate and call others to action. Given the growing body of artivist work produced today and its distribution via digital means, my research theorizes the “Chicana Radical Aesthetic”, a praxis and theoretical lens to look at how the visual cultures that emerge out of social movements, specifically in digital form, inform both aesthetic trends and strategies for a new generation of artists and build on the work of Chicana feminist epistemologies. The participation of visual artists has been profoundly instrumental in the articulation and advancement of national and transnational social justice movements. While social movements are measured by their political outcomes and demands met, she argues that the art practices of artivists are key to understanding how graphic arts have been used digitally to visually create solidarity with multiple political issues and communities, going beyond the Chicanx struggle for self-determination.