The Latino Art Museum presented various artworks that celebrated Argentine heritage and culture, Valentine’s Day and love at two shows throughout February in the Art Colony in Pomona.
The museum simultaneously held two exhibitions, “Pampa Mia: Arte y Diseño Argentino en Los Angeles” or “Pampa Mia: Art and Design of Argentina in Los Angeles,” and “Not Always Red.”
“Pampa Mia” featured more than 11 Argentine artists from Argentina and the United States.
“Not Always Red” was the museum’s Valentine’s Day-themed show. The name was a parody of the dA Center for the Arts’ similar exhibition “Simply Red.”
“(Pampa Mia) was from the Pilar Art Gallery and the director brought the group of artists from Argentina” said Graciela Horne Nardi, founder of the Latino Art Museum.
“The thing is because (the artists) left for Argentina, they took some of the artwork back to Argentina.”
The Latino Art Museum is a non-profit organization that promotes the works of Latin artists both in the U.S. and around the world. It holds an exhibition with a different theme every month.
The upper level of the museum was dedicated to “Pampa Mia” and displayed artworks of many mediums including oil paintings, collages, watercolor paintings, prints and acrylic on canvases.
The artwork did not have to be related to Argentina, but some artists used their country as the central theme.
Nardi, born in Argentina, contributed a few of her own works to “Pampa Mia.” Her “Tango” collection featured a collage and acrylic painting that celebrated the Argentine tango.
Some artworks were more abstract than others, like Claudia Gogo’s “El ángel.” From a distance, the canvas looked like it was covered in colorful dots and random lines but upon a closer look, one saw a person’s face cleverly constructed by the dots and lines.
The exhibition also showcased framed black and white photographs of Argentina by Carlos Alfredo Horne-Reilly, Nardi’s late father.
“I had all of the negatives from him – 400 of them,” Nardi said. “I didn’t (reproduce) all of them, I only did a few. I checked the pictures and chose the best ones.”
“Not Always Red” was displayed in the museum’s basement and featured Valentine’s Day-themed art and a couple of projects from the museum’s permanent collection.
Many pieces included images symbolic to love, including doves, roses and hearts.
However, some artworks from the permanent collection did not fit the theme at all.
Warren H. Scherich, Jr. is an artist who specializes in ceramics and sculpting. His project, “The Dogu Invasion,” is a part of the permanent collection and was displayed along with the “Not Always Red” exhibition.
Scherich created small ceramic figurines called dogus that represent humans’ primordial characters and natures. He and others make and distribute dogus around the world as artifacts for the future.
“As an artist using stone and high fired ceramics, I can leave a legacy, talk to the future for thousands of years after I’m dead,” Scherich said.
“These ceramic dogus which are spread all over the world will still be here 10,000 years from now.”
Using metallic gen pens, Nardi drew geometric shapes that formed the shape of a heart.
“I enjoy the art work, the pieces and being able to help,” Estefania Sanchez, volunteer for the museum, said. “I graduated from college with a major in art history and I kind of want to continue studying art history here.”
Emily Lau can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.