Dallas Museum of Art lowrider mural celebrates subculture

For the latest installation of the Dallas Museum of Art’s Concourse mural series, Los Angeles–based artist Guadalupe Rosales created a work paying homage to lowrider culture and the community it fosters. Spanning the Museum’s main, 153-foot thoroughfare, Drifting on a Memory features vivid colors and graphic designs that evoke the brilliant surfaces of the customized cars on a monumental scale, as well as recorded sound that conveys the aural experience of cruising in East Los Angeles.

Pinstriping for the Dallas Museum of Art lowrider mural was done by Dallas-based lowrider artist Lokey Calderon. Drifting on a Memory also incorporates two lightbox sculptures created by Rosales that hold photographs by the artist as well as some sourced from Dallas community lowriding families, engravings, and ephemera representative of Latinx culture. The resulting work is a celebration of lowriding culture and of Latinx communities and their cultural contributions.  

Drifting on a Memory is on view through July 10, 2022, and is included in free general admission. The site-specific mural was commissioned for the DMA by Vivian Crockett, the former Nancy and Tim Hanley Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art, and has been coordinated by Dr. Vivian Li, the Museum’s Lupe Murchison Curator of Contemporary Art.  

“Guadalupe and Lokey have created a work that is both visually and sensorially dazzling, and that honors the history and culture of Latinx communities here in Dallas, in Guadalupe’s hometown of Los Angeles, and beyond,” Dr. Agustín Arteaga, the DMA’s Eugene McDermott Director, said. “Drifting on a Memory beautifully exemplifies the combination of shared experiences and artistic immersion that we hope our Concourse murals provide for our visitors.” 

With origins in Los Angeles in the mid-20th century, lowriders—customized cars that often feature intricate designs, opulent interiors, and glittering finishes—have become a prominent expression of Mexican American culture throughout the United States. Art objects in and of themselves, lowriders also serve a social function: cruises down major roadways are opportunities for the Latinx community to gather, share food, and listen to music. 

Guadelupe Rosales, Drifting on a Memory, Dallas Museum of Art lowrider mural. Photo courtesy Dallas Museum of Art.
Guadelupe Rosales, Drifting on a Memory, Dallas Museum of Art lowrider mural. Photo courtesy Dallas Museum of Art.

To augment the Dallas Museum of Art lowrider mural, the museum will host a lowrider event on March 12, 2022, including a car viewing and a talk with Rosales and Calderon. More information on this, as well as a full schedule of events, is to come and can be found at DMA.org. 

Guadalupe Rosales (b. 1980, Los Angeles) is a multidisciplinary artist, archivist, educator, and founder of the popular archival projects Veteranas and Rucas and Map Pointz on Instagram. She works to document Latinx experiences in the United States through her ever-growing repository of communally sourced archival materials including photographs, memorabilia, and artifacts. Rosales develops installations combining photography, ephemera, and sound that intersect with her archival practice. In orchestrating these sensorial spaces, Rosales activates memories and invites viewers to collectively share in the experience. 

About the Dallas Museum of Art

Established in 1903, the Dallas Museum of Art (DMA) is among the 10 largest art museums in the country. With a free general admission policy and community outreach efforts, the DMA is distinguished by its commitment to research, innovation, and public engagement.

At the heart of the Museum and its programs is its global collection, which encompasses 25,000 works and spans 5,000 years of history, representing a full range of world cultures. Located in the nation’s largest arts district, the Museum acts as a catalyst for community creativity, engaging people of all ages and backgrounds with a diverse spectrum of programming, from exhibitions and lectures to concerts, literary events, and dramatic and dance presentations.

The DMA is an Open Access institution, allowing all works believed to be in the public domain to be freely available for downloading, sharing, repurposing, and remixing without restriction. For more information, visit DMA.org.  

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