TO MAIN ART GALLERY
Mark Vallen 2015 ©
Pencil on paper - 23' x 26" inches
this artwork on Saatchi Art.
at the exhibit -
Works on Paper:
Annual National Juried Exhibition
Brand Library & Art Center
Sept. 26 - Oct. 30, 2015
to Aztlán is a social realist portrait of a worker on
the streets of Los Angeles. The approach is unromanticized
but poignant. Such men are seen in many U.S. cities, but
my subject is a very common sight in the City of Angels.
drawing poses the question of identity, is the man depicted
an Angelino by birth or is he a Mexican immigrant? Some
might think he represents the city's notorious Chicano gang
culture, or the army of Mexican gardeners who tend the green
spaces in the city. He might even be a Mexican American
protester for a social cause. The palm fronds in the background
allude to the Catholic traditions that so many Latinos in
L.A. embrace. So who is this man?"
was the mythical homeland of the Aztecs, who migrated southward
until they reached the valley of Mexico. Some say Aztlán
was what we now call the southwest of the United States.
The strongest evidence of this is the Uto-Aztecan language
spoken by indigenous people in the American southwest. Linguists
generally believe that Uto-Aztecan speakers migrated to
Mesoamerica thousands of years ago, where the language took
root. Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs, is part of the
Uto-Aztecan language family.
Nahuatl "Aztlán" means "The place of the white heron." That
is something I always think of when I see a white heron
flying over one of L.A.'s waterways.
say how many times I have seen brown persons waiting at
a bus stop, pushing a baby buggy, or using a leaf blower,
and thought they looked like urban Aztecs. Welcome to Aztlán.
Library & Art Center is located at 1601 W. Mountain
Ave., Glendale, California 91201. Map