The editorial categories are research topics that have guided researchers during the recovery phase and continue to be the impetus behind the Documents Project’s digital archive and the Critical Documents book series. Developed by the project’s Editorial Board, each of the teams analyzed this framework and adapted it to their local contexts in developing their research objectives and work plans during the Recovery Phase. Learn more on the Editorial Framework page.
This is a very brief statement by Chicana visual artist Patssi Valdez. In it, she discusses the ways in which the content and appearance of her art has changed since her working as an artist got started. She emphasizes the autobiographical quality of all her works, detailing her major influences as a resident of East Los Angeles and as a minority subjected to racist episodes, police brutality, and other injustices. Valdez underscores the influential experience of her participation with the performance art group, ASCO, discussing how over time the difficult and negative life experiences she endured began to influence her art toward the dark and disturbing. Finally, Valdez describes her present artistic sensibility as one of focusing on the positive in order to combat stereotypes, thus presenting a positive image of Latina femininity.
Patssi Valdez is a painter, set designer, photographer, and filmmaker. She was one of the founding members of ASCO, a visual and performance art group, active in Los Angeles in the 1970s and ‘80s. ASCO used Conceptual art to draw attention to the socioeconomic living conditions in East Los Angeles and the racist, negative portrayal of Chicanos in the media. As the only woman artist, Valdez played an important role with the group in numerous performance art events and photographs (known as the “No Movies”). Her artist statement offers a brief, yet insightful perspective on her artistic influences and motivation for making art. It was published in a special 1986 issue of Imagine: International Chicano Poetry Journal that was dedicated to Chicano art.