Eric J. Garcia
I am the conquered and the conqueror. A descendant from the conquered Mexican territories north of the border, ironically I joined the U.S. military and defended the lands they conquered. Drawing on my experiences, I create work in a variety of disciplines, from site-based installations and murals to mass-produced printed publications. My work is imbued with a strong graphic identity and a sharp sense of satire influenced in equal parts by politicized printmakers, artists of the Mexican Mural Movement and comic book artists. By documenting untold stories in an accessible and visually striking way, my work can be a tool with which to share, learn from and to spark dialogue.
I make art to prevent historical amnesia and cultural erasure. I use Francisco Goya’s harsh reality, Guadalupe Posada’s satire and Jack Kirby’s dramatic splash pages to reflect the ironies of the past being played out in our present day. My art examines my personal history juxtaposed with historical events to create a visual understanding of the past that unravels the complexities of the present. Aware that history is used as a strategy of domination, I subvert historical narratives of the dominant powers with my art.
Eric J. Garcia blends history, contemporary themes and a graphic style to create politically charged art that reaches beyond aesthetics. Using sculpture, mixed media installations, murals, printmaking and his controversial political cartoons, he aims to challenge his viewers to question sources of power and the whitewashing of history. Received his BFA with a minor in Chicano studies from the University of New Mexico, Eric Garcia went on to complete his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is a core member of the printmaking collective, Instituto Gráfico de Chicago, a thriving member of the emerging Veteran Art Movement and is a teaching artist. Garcia has exhibited nationally and his work can be found in the collections of the National Museum of Mexican Art, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Smithsonian American Art Museum.