February 7, 2002


Subject: Re: AztlanNet: Nature of Art
Date: Thu, 7 Feb 2002 10:45:27 -0800 (PST)
From: michael sedano <mvsedano@yahoo.com>
Reply-To: AztlanNet@yahoogroups.com
To: AztlanNet@yahoogroups.com

The notion of a "group mind" or "collective unconscious" and similar terms help us account for the operation in the actual world, of "culture," an abstraction that cannot be witnessed. Only the artifacts of a culture can be witnessed. Culture's within one, like the "beliefs" Pedro preaches about. Go to a dictionary and you'll read something about the total way of life of a people including the tools and implements of their physical existence together with their ideas, languages, symbols, logic, and rhetoric. Communication is a dang good tool,by the way. The one image, or the series of Lupita images, and Pedro's distress, are two of the components that make the living, growing, adapting culture. Pedro doesn't like what he sees because of his culture. Alma created what she created because of her culture. Alma and Pedro, in and of the same culture. Divergent experiences, however.
Bottom line: complain all you want Pedro, Alma needs no defense, and nothing that has gone before her image argues against the viability and authenticity of her virgin image or any image she creates as legitimate and acceptable within anyone's understanding and appreciation of chicana and chicano art.
Politics, gender politics, aesthetic terrorism, these things transcend particular cultures and cannot meaningfully be the sole focus of a debate on art values.


Subject: AztlanNet: mvs notions re Nature of Art
Date: Thu, 7 Feb 2002 14:50:26 EST
From: Sedeno7@aol.com
Reply-To: AztlanNet@yahoogroups.com
To: AztlanNet@yahoogroups.com
CC: kaytiejohnson@yahoo.com, TraveisaBlue@aol.com, gbejerano@aztlannet.com, Gmendoza4@aol.com, NAFTAZTC@aol.com, tmnunn@moifa.org, joeyspouch2004@yahoo.com

mvsedano wrote:       Bottom line: complain all you want Pedro, Alma needs no defense, and nothing that has gone before her image argues against the viability and authenticity of her virgin image

MVSedano, cut the rhetoric, you're merely coming from the ego.  While Alma Lopez makes up her mind as to whether Our Lady of Guadalupe exists or not and if the apparition really took place, I think that there are Chicana artists that not only look at Her Image, but actually connect themselves to the Spirit behind the Image, through an exercise of faith.

Bottom line:  Instead of indulging in pamplinas about La Lupe cavorting with loteria mermaids and in  Her new  line of underwear (talk about obsessing on sexuality!) (viability? -mvs rhetoric), other  Chicana artists connect themselves to  spirit realities, and also to a culture that is advancing.  It is their art I am more interested in looking at and talking about, and seeing museums and AztlanNEt.com  validate as "authentic"  or relevant changing expressions of Chicano/a culture.  

BTW, did anybody see the UC-Davis show on contemporary Guadalupes?  Was there a catalogue?  Was it any good? What is the name of the gallery there again?  Also, does someone know Santa Barazza's e-ma address?  


Subject: Re: AztlanNet: mvs notions re Nature of Art
Date: Fri, 08 Feb 2002 00:42:02 -0000
From: "mvsedano" <mvsedano@yahoo.com>
Reply-To: AztlanNet@yahoogroups.com
To: AztlanNet@yahoogroups.com

What do you have against "rhetoric"? And my ego, for all that matters?
Rhetorical composition is what gives words shape and form as persuasive messages. Without "rhetoric" writing and speaking lack adaptation to an intended audience.
"Viability" is precisely Pedro's objection. Viable, capable of sustained existence as an independent or autonomous existence. Pedro denies that the Lupe in Two-Piece should exist at all! Hence, "viability" is an issue in the debate (thus rhetorical, esa).
I'm not sure what you mean by Alma Lopez making up her mind. You think Our Lady exists, upon her demise she ascended to sit at the left hand of God. That legend, dear person, is rhetoric of the highest art!
Does your paragraph mean you believe Alma Lopez' art is not connected to spirit realities? I don't understand how a figure's mode of dress cuts the connections between the source image and the current derived image? Nor can I accept your and Pedro's belief that dress equates with sexual motives, either the artist's or the Virgin's. I venture that you believe the Alma Lopez image devoid of the religiosity you invest in the image. You're right, if you the critic hold that opinion. Doesn't make the artwork any the less viable as art, nor artistic as chicana expression.
Joann, I'm sorry you're upset, but please endeavor to make sense.
Separate your personal beliefs from standards or values that we--you and I-- can share in common, i.e. speak in more broadly cultural ways that don't suppose your religiosity supercedes anything I might believe. Yes, that, too, is rhetorical.
Rhetoric lies at the heart of communication. Rhetoric is what makes human communication different from what animals do. rhetorically,
scientia bene dicendi


Re: AztlanNet: mvs notions re Nature of Art
Thu, 07 Feb 2002 17:33:57 -0800
JoAnn <joannpen@attbi.com>

Michael --
Heck no, I'm not upset with you. I can't imagine anyone thinking my 'religiosity' supercedes anything, especially your values or beliefs. I'm generally in agreement with your expression in these debates. Hey, I'm one who was defending Alma's right to her own expression.
That said, yes I thought the exhibit at UC Davis was excellent, because of, not despite, the varied interpretations. There were wonderful pieces by Dominguez, Favela, Cid, several Montoyas, Hernandez, Buenrostro, and more than I can name. Any exhibit that includes these artists would be a treat, and the Guadalupe theme showed they are all willing to consider the meaning of this symbol, even in the broadest sense. It was clear that all own it and no one wholly owns it.
As I said once before, I don't think any symbol -- cross, flag, dollar bills or the virgen -- is off limits for artistic reinterpretation.
JoAnn A.