White Walls Presents
New works by Ernesto Yerena
Opening Reception: Saturday, November 13, 2010 7-11 PM
Exhibition Dates: November 13- December 04, 2010
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SAN FRANCISCO- August 06, 2010 - White Walls is pleased to present GANAS 2020, the debut solo exhibition by Los Angeles based artist, Ernesto Yerena. The exhibition is based on a story written by the artist that details a revolutionary movement, GANAS, that is an ideology of reform, empowerment and motivation. The exhibition will include 45-50 pieces comprised of stencil and collage on canvas, and rubyliths. The opening reception for GANAS 2020 will be held at White Walls on Saturday, November 13, 2010 from 7-11 PM. The exhibit will be on display through December 04, 2010 and is free and open to the public. Yerena will participate in an artist talk with highly regarded artists-activists, Melanie Cervantes and Jesus Barraza in coordination with the show (date is TBA).
Ernesto Yerena was born in El Centro, CA, a mid- sized farming town bordering Mexicali, BC, MX. Fueled by his cross-cultural upbringing, his art practice reflects his observations of the views and interactions between the Mexican communities living on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. The artist shares narratives of his conflicts of identity that he feels are kindred to what many Chicanos of these communities experience, such as access to the “American Dream” vs. being “truly” Mexican. His work depicts his frustrations with the weaknesses of his community as well as defending their dignity and their rights. Through his brazen imagery, the artist brings political concerns to light with subject matter that depicts cultural icons, rebels and everyday people voicing their stance against oppression. Highly recognized for his activism, Yerena is the founder and curator of the Alto Arizona Art campaign (2010) as well as a founding member of the We Are Human campaign (2009).
Yerena’s work combines his mastery of stenciling and airbrushing, which he learned from his father, together with his influence of street art, music, art from El Movimiento Chicano of the 1960’s, and contemporary Latino artists such as Jesus Barraza, Rupert Garcia, Melanie Cervantes and Favianna Rodriguez. He strengthened his art practice and technique while interning and assisting for Shepard Fairey from 2006-2009. During his time working with Fairey, the two artists collaborated on several highly anticipated print editions. In contrast to his contemporary themes, the artist pays homage to his culture by employing a vibrant color palette of orange, brown, yellow and turquoise, similar to colors used by the ancient Aztecs. Yerena predominately uses spray paint for his pieces in which he experiments with textures and layering often sanding the surfaces to create weathered or distressed appearances.
GANAS 2020, Yerena’s first solo exhibition, introduces viewers to the artist’s fictional narrative about a revolutionary movement and how he envisions it ten years into its future. The story centers on a self-empowering belief; GANAS (translating as desire, motivation, gain), that ultimately ingrains a mindset of anti-conformity and living without self-imposed limitations. Specifically, the spirit of GANAS also encourages its community to challenge the system and corporate entities. For this exhibition, Yerena projects his story into 2020 where the GANAS movement has flourished for the past 10 years, and key characters from his narrative will be introduced.
Ernesto Yerena is an artist living and working in Los Angeles. He is the co-owner and curator of Hecho Con Ganas, a creative publishing company based in Los Angeles and is sponsored by MTN Colors. Yerena has shown nationally with Subliminal Projects, White Walls and Self Help Graphics and internationally with Galeria Estatal de Baja California. The artist has been featured for both his art and activism in The Huffington Post, PBS NewsHour and Limited Hype Magazine.