culture

These Are Some Of The Best Visual Contemporary Visual Artists Taking Over The Art World Right Now

ryanleegallery / broobs.psd / Instagram

Visual artistry today is filled with Latino artists of every age. While the world of Hollywood may be slow at showing the diversity and versatility of America, the art landscape doesn’t reflect that at all. In 2019, you can walk into any museum or gallery and witness vibrant works created by people that look like you and me.

Whether it be through photography, digital graphics, murals, or mixed media, the art world has never looked as beautiful as it does today, and that’s in large part because of talented and expressive Latino artists.

Here are some of our favorite Latino artists you should know about today.

Patrick Martinez

CREDIT: Instagram / patrick_martinez

Despite our own chaotic life or the injustices happening in our country, the work of Patrick Martinez always feels like a haven. Hip hop, street culture, and the community around him is an inspiration for the former student of Pasadena High School Visual Arts and Design. One of his most prominent attractions is his use of neon lights constructed into visual sculptures. Galleries all over the world have displayed his artwork.

Judy Baca

CREDIT: Instagram/@l0l0lita

The artwork of Judy Baca is an institution of Chicano culture. If you live in California or have visited, chances are you’ve seen her work. From the 2,400 feet long “Great Wall of Los Angeles” that is depicted along a flood control channel in the San Fernando Valley to the Cesar Chavez Memorial at San Jose State University, her murals are everywhere. She is also an art teacher and is showing the next generation of Latinx artists the incredible ways they can share our history.

Xochi Solis

CREDIT: Instagram/@xochisolis

At first glance, the art of Xochi Solis feels like warm flesh. Then as you get closer to it, the abstract pieces seem to resemble all of your favorite things in the world compacted on top of each other, almost like a sandwich. It may sound odd. However, her work is incredible. The Austin-based artist says she “considers the repeated act of layering a meditation on color, texture, and shape all leading to a greater awareness of the visual intricacies found in her immediate environment, both natural and cultural.”

Martine Gutierrez

CREDIT: Instagram/@ryanleegallery

“Society perpetuates rigid constructs—fabricated dichotomies like ‘male’ vs. ‘female’, ‘gay’ vs. ‘straight’, ‘minority’ vs. ‘white’, ‘reality’ vs. ‘fantasy’, ‘dominate’ vs. ‘submissive’, etc.,” Brooklyn-based artist Martine Gutierrez says. “But our interpretation of these constructs is subjective and not immutable. Reality, like gender, is ambiguous because it exists fluidly.” The artist’s work is as complex and stunning as identity itself.

Karlito Miller Espinosa

CREDIT: Instagram/@mataruda

Costa Rican artist, Karlito Miller-Espinosa, explores identity in the most brilliant way. His work above — two doormats that have “ni de aquí / ni de allá” instead of the words “welcome” — speaks to the heaviness he brings. “The mats are informed by the American policy Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) referencing a state of continuous deferment,” he states.

Ruben Guadalupe Marquez

CREDIT: Instagram/@broobs.psd

The work of Ruben Guadalupe Marquez went viral with his tragic but beautiful image of a Jakelin Ameí Rosmery Caal Maquin, the child that died in the custody of the Border Patrol. Since then we’ve been following his work intently on Instagram, where he highlights extraordinary people including Cyntoia Brown and Yalitza Aparicio Martínez with his signature collaging.

Alba Paramo

CREDIT: Instagram/@albaparamoart

“As a Mexican artist, my art is rooted in Latin American symbolism, mythology, literature, and cultural history,” Alba Páramo, a Guadalajara-born, New York-based artist states on her site. “The images that appear in my prints, drawings and paintings are interpretations of dreams about love, nature and the sacred connections between animals and human beings. They are representations of my vision and heritage as well as my deep interest in Tibetan art.”

#RodriguezCalero

CREDIT: Instagram/@critical.objects

We first experienced the work of Rodríguez Calero at an exhibition at the Museo del Barrio in New York City a couple of years ago. We instantly felt transported into some sort of alternative church where are welcomed. The Puerto Rican artist has a magical way of putting together images that look as if their whole intent on earth was to put together as one work of art.

Guadalupe Maravilla

CREDIT: Instagram/@drawingcenter

Our world doesn’t seem to make sense right now, but for some reason, the crazy and insane sculptures by Guadalupe Maravilla fit right in. According to Creative Capital, Maravilla “is a transdisciplinary artist who was part of the first wave of undocumented children to arrive at the United States border in the 1980s from Central America.”

José Parlá,

CREDIT: Instagram/@joseparla

Encountering the work of José Parlá, a graduate of Savannah College of Art and Design is like walking into a colorful galaxy. It’s larger than life, and we desperately wish we could simply walk into his massive murals. His work is everywhere, and if you live in New York City go to One World Trade Center and see it for yourself. 

Nani Chacon

CREDIT: Instagram/@nanibah

We’ve been following the work of Nina Chacon for quite some time. The artist, from New Mexico, paints the most stunning murals depicting Latinas, cholos, brown heroes, and so much more. Her work is a real wonder, and we hope she never stops painting.

Cara Romero

CREDIT: Instagram/@cararomerophotography

Photographer Cara Romero depicts the most authentic side to people and their passions. The California native who is now based in New Mexico has won several awards, according to her site, including ribbons at both major markets and the “Visions for the Future” award from the Native American Rights Fund.

Debi Hasky

CREDIT: Instagram/@debihasky

The flirty and feminist illustrations by Panamanian-American artist Debi Hasky bring to light women, powerful women. The artworks are statements of who we are, where we have been, and where we want to go. “Debi’s illustrations are all primarily based on personal experiences, such as her struggles with body love and examining what it is to be a woman today.”

Antonio Caro

CREDIT: Instagram/@lishik90

Colombian born conceptual artist, Antonio Caro, maybe pushing 70 but his artwork is as contemporary as they come. He’s kind of like our version of Andy Warhol — yes, it’s good. You can currently see his work for yourself at the Nasher Museum in Durham, North Carolina.

Favianna Rodriguez

CREDIT: Instagram/@favianna1

We recently covered the accomplishments of artist Favianna Rodriguez because her work was chosen for Ben & Jerry’s “Resistance” ice cream campaign. Her work represents our fight, our struggle, and our people.

“I love to inspire the next generation of artists,” Rodriguez wrote on her Instagram. “When I was a kid, I rarely saw images of myself across media and in museums, and that’s exactly WHY I became an artist. That’s why I advocate for art programs for kids, especially kids of color.

Laura Aguilar

CREDIT: Instagram/@latinx.in.da.south

While groundbreaking photographer Laura Aguilar died last year, her work will never be forgotten. She’s one of the very few Latina queer photographers who could capture subjects through a powerful lens. “She was saying ‘I’m going to show you this femininity in this landscape,'” Los Angeles Times staff writer Carolina Miranda said before Aguilar passed away. ‘”I’m going to show you brown-ness in this landscape, I’m going to show you queerness in this landscape.'”

Raúl de Nieves

CREDIT: Instagram/@norauls

Mexican artist Raúl de Nieves has a way with beads. He has taken a traditional form of art that has been practiced by indigenous people for centuries and transformed it into treasure. His work resembles what you’d find if you dove into the ocean, and God’s most precious things all gathered onto reefs. You can currently see his work at the Cleveland Museum of Art.

Graciela Iturbide

CREDIT: Instagram/@gracielaiturbide

People describe the images of Graciela Iturbide have as “anti-picturesque” and “anti-folkloric.” However, they breathe light into the “anti” and give it beauty and authenticity. Her work has been displayed worldwide and can currently on view at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

Ronny Quevedo

CREDIT: Instagram/#RonnyQuevedo

What would a splash of perfection look like — if the splash is shaped perfectly in line and color? The answer would be Ronny Quevedo. The Ecuadoran, Yale grad, creates massive works of art that look as if they were engineered for the exact spot that they’re located. It’s that insane. He is currently an artist in residence at Smack Mellon in Brooklyn.

Aliza Nisenbaum

CREDIT: Instagram/@marymaryglasgow

Aliza Nisenbaum, a Mexican artist based in Brooklyn, is a realist. By that we mean she paints the real and the true. The work exudes raw emotion in each painting. She is currently Assistant Professor of Professional Practice in Visual Arts (Painting) Columbia University School of the Arts.


READ: 8 Texan Artists Take On Identity And Politics In New Exhibit 

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This Mexican Surreal Artist Created Freaky Realistic Sculptures Of David Bowie, Frida Kahlo, And Juan Gabriel

Culture

This Mexican Surreal Artist Created Freaky Realistic Sculptures Of David Bowie, Frida Kahlo, And Juan Gabriel

hifructose.com / rubenorozcoloza / Instagram

The death of our favorite artists is always so heartbreaking. We were devastated when Juan Gabriel passed away, and so sad when David Bowie died. It is through their music that they continue to live on in our lives. A Mexican artist feels the same way as us, which is why he is bringing these heroes back to life one sculpture at a time.

Ruben Orozco Loza is a surrealist artist from Jalisco. He sculpts the most insane, yet realistic, art of iconic people.

Instagram/@rulasdue

That’s artist Ruben standing next to his creation of Mexican artist Jose Clemente Orozco. Here are more creations below from the University of Guadalajara graduate.

His David Bowie is so real it might haunt your dreams for the rest fo your life.

Part of the excitement is watching Ruben create these realistic depictions. It is not an easy or short process. He really takes the time to make the sculptures so realistic that it borders on creepy.

Obviously, he had to give us another moment to fawn over Frida Kahlo.

One of the most stunning moments of Ruben’s work is in the eyes of his subjects. That is what looks the most realistic, but when he inserts them into the face and fudges with them is the part that is so weird. It’s almost like he is doing surgery.

Juan Gabriel was given a second life with the artist’s take on the late singer.

In this video, you can see Ruben is working while looking at a picture of JuanGa. He is constantly looking at the real Juan Gabriel and back at his subject to make sure it looks identical.

Even Pope Francis is a subject that the sculptor couldn’t resist.

We love seeing Ruben brush the hair of the Pope. It’s so cool and realistic. Ruben really gives you a good look at what it takes to create truly stunning works of art.

Guillermo Del Toro would be so pleased with this amazing sculpture.

For his artwork of Del Toro, Ruben also becomes a hairdresser. Did you see how long his hair was in the start of the video? He has to get each piece perfect, even the beard. Stunning!

To see more of his work and videos click here.

READ: These Are Some Of The Best Visual Contemporary Visual Artists Taking Over The Art World Right Now

An Artist From Texas Turned ‘Game Of Thrones’ Characters Into Aztec Art And It’s More Lit Than Our Fuming Mad Queen

Culture

An Artist From Texas Turned ‘Game Of Thrones’ Characters Into Aztec Art And It’s More Lit Than Our Fuming Mad Queen

@emmanuelvaltierraillustrator \ Instagram | Edited by Mitú

Aztec art was at the center of the Aztec empire during the 15th and 16th century. The imagery is an insightful view of what life was like back then, and it still holds so much information that continues to fascinate scholars.

While the art form is centuries old, it’s still very relevant to our culture, our history, and traditions, which is why a Latino artist is giving it a new life.

Artist Emmanuel Valtierra has launched a series of Aztec-style imagery that features some of today’s pop culture icons.

Instagram/@emmanuelvaltierraillustrator

According to his website, Valtierra, was born in San Antonio, Texas and raised in Monterrey, México. He studied Graphic Design at the University of Nuevo Leon and Photography at San Antonio College.

Valtierra said he is using current references to introduce people to the historic art form.

Instagram/@emmanuelvaltierraillustrator

“Many people outside Mexico didn’t even know it existed,” Valtierra told Remezcla. “I wanted to introduce art little by little to a new public, and there was no better way than to do it with images they will recognize easily, like video games, movies, and cartoons.”

Some of the pop culture references include Game Of Thrones, Day of the Dead, the Avengers, and Pokemon.

Instagram/@emmanuelvaltierraillustrator

“The love Valtierra has for history has influenced him on all his projects,” his website states. “The goal is to keep teaching new generations about our past in a fun way in every media possible. In the future, Valtierra is planning to release more books, direct more videos, and work on more games for his public and followers.”

If you’re interested in his work, Valtierra also has some items for purchase.

Instagram/@emmanuelvaltierraillustrator

The item above is an illustrated book ($38) in which, as Valtierra states, “recounts the events of the war that the Aztecs had against the Spaniards. Now imagine a world where the Aztecs had defeated the Spaniards. How would our world be different?”

Click here to purchase, or here to learn more about him and his artwork.

READ: Ugly Primo Is One Latino Artist Everyone Who Loves Pop Culture Should Know About

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