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‘You Belong Here’ exhibit honors photography of Latinx artists across the United States
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“Elyse Regehr and Javier Orosco, Downtown LA” is one piece in the Carlos Museum’s new exhibit, “You Belong Here: Place, People, and Purpose in Latinx Photography.” © Reynaldo Rivera. Courtesy of the artist; Reena Spaulings Fine Art, New York / Los Angeles; and Aperture. 1989, digital print from negative.

Opening Sept. 9 at the Michael C. Carlos Museum, “You Belong Here: Place, People, and Purpose in Latinx Photography” celebrates the dynamic photography of Latinx artists across the United States. The exhibition brings together established and emerging artists who tackle themes of political resistance; family and community; fashion and culture; and the complexity of identity in American life. 

Artists in the exhibition contribute to a vast visual archive of the Latinx experience as pluralistic, nuanced and fluid. They illustrate a range of histories and geographies, contextualize and reinterpret watershed social and artistic movements, stake space for queerness and articulate the importance of photography within the larger field of Latinx art. 

“The Upkeepers,” Joiri Minaya., 2021. Courtesy the artist and Aperture.

“You Belong Here” explores contemporary photography that sheds light on social spaces — from intimate portrayals of home and family to collective experiences of the streets and nightlife — as well as the in-betweenness, or nepantla, of transnational, multiracial and postcolonial identities. It generates an expansive dialogue about visibility and belonging for Latinx people.

Andi McKenzie, site curator for the exhibition and curator of works on paper for the Carlos Museum, notes the range of subjects over several decades that are showcased in the exhibit.

“Visitors can expect to experience dynamic works from the 1960s to the present that explore visibility and belonging, displacement and migration, and families and communities, both those of birth and those that are found along the way,” McKenzie says.

The exhibition features works by Laura Aguilar, Genesis Báez, William Camargo, Sofía Córdova, Perla de Leon, Tarrah Krajnak, Hiram Maristany, Joiri Minaya, Steven Molina Contreras, Star Montana, Eddie Quiñones, Reynaldo Rivera, Guadalupe Rosales, Gabriela Ruiz and Bibs Moreno, and John M. Valadez.

McKenzie is particularly excited about Aguilar’s work in the exhibit.

“Working class, queer and large-bodied in 1970s Los Angeles, Aguilar unapologetically explored her identities in photographs that are bold, honest and so technically precise that they demanded to be taken seriously,” McKenzie says.

Curated by Pilar Tompkins Rivas, chief curator and deputy director of curatorial and collections at the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in Los Angeles, “You Belong Here,” organized by Aperture, originates from Tompkins Rivas’s work as guest editor of “Latinx,” the Winter 2021 issue of Aperture magazine.

The exhibit is open until Dec. 3. Emory University students, faculty and staff and Emory Healthcare employees are admitted to the Carlos Museum for free with a valid ID. 

About the exhibition sponsors

“You Belong Here” is made possible in Atlanta through generous support from the Charles S. Ackerman Fund, Georgia Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities' United We Stand Initiative, and the Massey Charitable Trust.

This exhibition is supported by valued community partners including Georgia Public Broadcasting, the Latin American Association, Placita Latina and Topo Chico.

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