Leading scholars of Latin American art and culture Josh Kun, Rubén Gallo, and James Oles join conservator Harriet Stratis to discuss the life and work of Martín Ramírez. Drawing on the history of art in Mexico, the social dynamics of California in the mid-20th century, and Ramírez’s techniques and materials, this conversation will offer new perspectives to the artist’s complex story. The event will include live Spanish interpretation.
James Oles is Senior Lecturer in the Art Department at Wellesley College and a specialist in Latin American art, focusing on modern Mexican art and architecture, through museum as well as academic projects. His books include South of the Border: Mexico in the American Imagination, 1914-1947 (1993), monographs on Helen Levitt, Agustín Lazo, and Pedro Friedeberg, and a groundbreaking survey, Art and Architecture in Mexico (2013). He has published scholarly essays in a wide variety of journals and museum catalogue with a focus on Mexican art in the 1920s, 1930s, and 1940s.
Josh Kun is Professor in the Annenberg School for Communication and the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California. He is an author and editor of several books, including the American Book Award winning Audiotopia: Music, Race, and America, two collaborations with the Los Angeles Public Library (Songs in the Key of Los Angeles and To Live and Dine in L.A.), and most recently, The Tide Was Always High: The Music of Latin America in Los Angeles. As a curator and artist, he has worked with SFMOMA, the California African American Museum, the Grammy Museum, the ASU Art Museum, and the Getty Foundation. He is a 2016 MacArthur Fellow.
Rubén Gallo is the Walter S. Carpenter Jr. Professor in Language, Literature and Civilization of Spain at Princeton University. He is the author, most recently, of Proust’s Latin Americans (2014), Freud’s Mexico: Into the Wilds of Psychoanalysis (2010), and Mexican Modernity: the Avant-Garde and the Technological Revolution (2005), as well as two books on Mexico City’s visual culture: New Tendencies in Mexican Art (2004) and The Mexico City Reader (2004). He is the recipient of the Gradiva award for the best book on a psychoanalytic theme and of the Modern Language Association’s Katherine Singer Kovacs Prize for the best book on a Latin American topic. Gallo also serves as research director of the Sigmund Freud Museum in Vienna.
Harriet K. Stratis is considered one of the world’s leading conservators, and is known for her research, publications, and presentations on artists’ methods and materials. After a career that spanned nearly twenty-nine years at the Art Institute of Chicago, Stratis left her position as Senior Research Conservator to establish her own firm, Stratis Fine Art Conservation, LLC. Over the years, Stratis contributed her expertise to numerous exhibitions and exhibition catalogs, among them, Gauguin: Artist as Alchemist (2017); Mary Cassatt: Modern Woman (1998); Degas: Beyond Impressionism (1996); and Odilon Redon: Prince of Dreams (1994).