In Pictures: See Contemporary Artworks That Celebrate the Vibrant Creativity of Lowrider and Skater Culture
"Desert Rider" at the Phoenix Museum of Art highlights the region's Latinx and Indigenous artists.
“Desert Rider” at the Phoenix Art Museum is a trip.
The show focuses on car culture and skateboard culture in the American Southwest—specifically how it has been a resource and inspiration for both Latinx and Indigenous artists. The many sculptures within capture the exuberance of lowrider style, its concept of customization as a creative outlet, and its grassroots displays of identity.
“I hope guests see the impact that local culture has had on artists working in the Southwest and appreciate this piece of history from the land in which they were born,” curator Gilbert Vicario said in a statement about the show.
Among the highlights are Justin Favela’s Gypsy Rose Piñata (II), a full-scale sculpture of a hot-pink lowrider in the style of a piñata, newly commissioned for “Desert Rider.” Douglas Miles’s installation You’re Skating on Native Land (2022) features skate decks bearing the titular phrase alongside photos from his Apache community—the Phoenix New Times called it “a stunning reminder of place.”
And one of the works visitors will surely remember is Liz Cohen’s well-known project Trabantimino (2002–10). Cohen spent eight years merging two incongruously different vehicles—an East German Trabant and a Chevy El Camino—into one car, then transforming herself for the role of a car model for a series of set-up photos.
See photos from “Desert Rider” below.
“Desert Rider” is on view at the Phoenix Art Museum, Phoenix, Ariz., through September 18, 2022.
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