ARTIST STATEMENT RAUL BALTAZAR
As artist, I act as a “medium” between Mesoamerican and Western culture, at once part of both worlds, able to act as mimetic mirror for both. And through my mimetic capabilities (via a trans-disciplinary practice) I channel the revolutionary struggle rooted in Mesoamerican Indigenous cultural resistance to the home base of the Colonial Entertainment Capital of the World, Los Angeles.
As artist, I seek healing in response to the trauma the body endures when experiencing and rationalizing abuse of power and authority by means of sanctioned and unsanctioned reiterations of violence. By participating in the creation of contemporary culture rooted in ancient culture, I create space for healing, communication and reflection. Ritual interventions, mimicry, storytelling, and trans-disciplinary art forms are ways, I communicate with the public. My intention is to clearly reflect others back to themselves in order to create space for communication, catharsis, reflection, observation, empathy and healing. Syncretism, hybridity and mimicry are forms in which I mirror the nuanced relationships between power and authority, abuse of power and authority, sanctioned and unsanctioned forms of violence, and linear versus cyclical logic within the framework of the liminal space between Mesoamerican and what Bell Hooks names, Imperialist white-supremacist capitalist patriarchy.
In 1991-1993 I acted as unofficial ships artist and Boatswain's Mate, enlisted in the United States Navy, in 1996 and 2000, I ran in Peace and Dignity Journey's in fulfillment of a sacred Meso-American prophecy, in 1994-1996 I helped establish Regeneracion an arts activist space in Highland Park, and have worked as an educator, cultural worker and arts advocate since. I lead art workshops for but not limited to, incarcerated/ gang affiliated youth, veterans and socially engaged people. And am currently working with undergraduate, graduate and post- graduate artists/ students. Currently, I co-leading a mural project with Michaels Massenburg at Los Padrinos, juvenile hall, Downey, CA for Theater of Hearts. Where some youth inmates are facing up to 20 year sentences.
Thank you, for taking the time to check out my site and feel free to contact me if you are interested in acquiring work, commissioning work, teaching, lecture, exhibition, donations and/or art related services.
One hand washes the other,