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Looking For A Hero
March 29, 2019 - June 30, 2019
Gerardo Rosales’s art deals with issues of domestic labor, gender violence and class discrimination experienced by immigrants from Latin America like himself. In Rosales’s body of work, his native Venezuelan “naïve” folk art or the “a-political” expressions in modernist abstractions are purposedly appropriated and paradoxically transformed into powerful vehicles to denounce poignant social problems.
Living in Houston for the last 18 years, Rosales’s new exhibit “Looking for a Hero” addresses local and immigrant communities at large.
The exhibit spins a biting narrative around fantasies and realities surrounding domestic workers’s lives. Thus, on the one hand,, imagining workers were given leasure time, Rosales transforms their cleaning utensils, such as mops, into luxurious, satirical wigs evoking those worn in the court of Marie Antoinette during the French Revolution. On the other hand, Rosales presents a series of tableaux where domestic workers’s silhouettes are embedded within a backdrop of iconic geometric patterns replicating those designed by Italian architect Gio Ponti for homes of Latin American art patrons. The workers’s figures, like their lives, are subsumed within the abstract background. They are hardly discernible since their uniforms mimic the same pattern of the overall design.