Feb 07, 2012
Humboldt State University’s Reese Bullen Gallery presents artwork by El Salvadorian expatriate artist Victor Cartagena. “Tatuajes de la Memoria” (Tattoos of Memory) is on exhibit Feb. 17 through Mar. 8, 2012 with an opening reception on Friday, Feb. 17 from 4:30-6 p.m. A talk given by the artist will follow from 6-7 p.m. The public is invited to attend.
Working in a multitude of mediums including photography, video, sculpture and installation, Cartagena exposes his audience to the personal sufferings of a civilian in war. As a young adult in the 1980s, Cartagena relocated from El Salvador to San Francisco during a violent period of civil war in his home country. This experience influenced his work to include themes of alienation, loss, death and social justice. “Tatuajes de la Memoria” will be running concurrently with Humboldt State’s Social Justice Summit, Friday, Mar. 2 and Saturday, Mar. 3, 2012.
Cartagena has participated in Tamoanchan, a collective of Latin American Artists sponsored by the California Arts Council and based out of Berkeley, Calif. He has also had exhibits at the MACLA Center for Latino Arts in San Jose and other venues internationally. Cartagena’s art challenges the viewer to face the injustices of world politics, especially regarding violence, human rights, resource consumption and waste. Commonly avoided issues are directly confronted through the anonymous faces of sufferers. His views explore cultural injustice, as it expands beyond borders, giving perspective to labor and immigration politics, violent socialization and dissociation of American concern for international conflict.
On a mission to start a dialogue to stimulate change, Victor Cartagena has been active in California and El Salvadorian schools, giving talks to and holding workshops for future generations of artists and educators. He is a strong proponent of the power of art to bring awareness, conversation and eventually healing to communities. Cartagena’s work as a whole encourages people to participate and interact with art to activate their social consciousness.
The Reese Bullen Gallery is open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 1-5 p.m., Thursday 1-7 p.m. and Saturday 10-2 p.m. and is located in the HSU Art Building directly across from the Van Duzer Theatre. The gallery is open to the public and admission is free. Parking is available at meters and day permits are available for $3.50 at parking kiosks. For more information, please contact the gallery office at (707) 826-5814 or firstname.lastname@example.org.