January 17, 2019 Taos, New Mexico

The Harwood Museum of Art

Masthead image Menu
Saturday, June 9, 2018 - 3-5pm


Opening, Saturday, June 9, Reception 3-5pm: Exhibition Dates, June 9 - October 7,2018

Full artist statement: “An artist’s duty, as far as I’m concerned, is to reflect the times. I think that is true of painters, sculptors, poets, musicians. As far as I’m concerned, it’s their choice, but I CHOOSE to reflect the times and situations in which I find myself.
That, to me, is my duty.” - Nina Simone

these are urgent times. not more concerning perhaps than at other times in contemporary (so-called) u.s. history. u.s capitalism and its corporatocratic minions have always been at war with those that it deems anti-thetical to its project of global domination – indigenous, black, brown, woman and girls, youth, immigrant, the economically struggling, queer, trans, people with disabilities, people with chronic illnesses, the neurodiverse, the incarcerated, people working for justice….etc….etc…..etc.

these selected paintings represent curated images within a larger body of work that reflects my shapeshifting positionality as a gender non-conforming, queer, xicanx, parent, artist, intersectional feminist and transformative arts educator in a white supremacist capitalist patriarchal society.

so many of my pieces start out as words…….poems, articles, stories, stats, meditations. often as language fades into the background, images emerge that form a visual lengua, culturally coded, amplifying my aesthetic rooted in xicanx culture and cosmology.

these mixed media images created over the several years illustrate my musings on intimate relationships, healing, self-love, gender indoctrination, motherhood, xicanx feminism, war, occupation and femicide. they are meant to promote visibility, stimulate awareness, and spark action.

there are no words to express my gratitude for the unconditional support and love of my partner and my children, for my community of artists, chosen fam and youth – brilliant and hysterical critical thinkers who continually challenge and inspire. i’m grateful to James Matt Thomas and the Harwood Museum for this opportunity.

rafa tarín
june 2018

rafa is a northeast los angeles born self-taught artist with deep new mexican roots. they are a transformative arts educator working with northern new mexico youth in the disciplines of visual art, puppetry, stiltwalking and devised physical theatre for the past 15 years.