Jose Parla and JR are two of my favorite contemporary artists. I like not only their art, but their philanthropic influence. On top of all of that, they are both super nice guys. Last year they collaborated on a project in Cuba. It was documented and later exhibited at the Wolkowitz Gallery in NYC. I ended up covering the opening. You can still peep a large wheatpaste piece on the wall of the Getty Mart parking lot at 24th and 10th, that was originally placed to promote the show. I was pretty excited when I saw that Nowness released this short video documenting the project. Check it out below.
El Mac participated in the latest iteration of Coachella by painting this mural titled “The Anonymous Farm Worker.” Mac says this about the piece:
It’s not intended to represent any one specific person, but rather many people, especially the “anonymous farm worker”. Farm workers in this country have been marginalized despite producing the very food we all need for survival. The Coachella valley is an important region for farming, and has been the setting for many of the struggles by the UFW to to improve workers’ rights since the 60s..and you can feel this history there. Anytime during the day while I was painting this I could look to the park to my right and see groups of viejitos that looked similar to the man I was painting, all gathered at picnic tables gambling and laughing. One girl came by and asked if I was painting someone famous..when I said no, she replied “good, then I can say it’s my tío..thank you for bringing beauty to our varrio” -This is the best kind of feedback I can hope to receive.