03junAll Day29julStudio Channel Islands Presents 'Sacred Space: Reflections Unseen'CURATED BY CARLOS HEREDIA

Event Details

Pictured: Emilia CruzYou’re Safe Here
The exhibition Sacred Space: Reflections Unseen is focused on the experiences of Indigenous and Chicano artists. This diverse selection of art demonstrates their unique experiences within the United States. These artists’ work is vital in a time when language and terms can feel limiting. Art offers a rich human interaction, allowing us to better understand ourselves and those around us.
Cara Romerohttps://www.cararomerophotography.com/
Cara Romero (b. 1977, Inglewood, CA) is a contemporary fine art photographer. An enrolled citizen of the Chemehuevi Indian Tribe, Romero was raised between contrasting settings: the rural Chemehuevi reservation in Mojave Desert, CA and the urban sprawl of Houston, TX. Romero’s identity informs her photography, a blend of fine art and editorial photography, shaped by years of study and a visceral approach to representing Indigenous and non-Indigenous cultural memory, collective history, and lived experiences from a Native American female perspective.
Jynx Prado, https://pradoartist.com/
Born and currently based in Los Angeles, Prado critiques and questions the natural and artificial elements within cultures, nature and human existence and the coexistence of them through an interdisciplinary practice with material ranging in found objects, fibers and themselves. Through humor, irony and symbolism Jynx adds Jynx to Hijink Art.
Leah Mata Fragua, https://www.leahmata.com/gallery
Leah Mata Fragua is an artist, educator, and member of the Yak Tityu Tityu Yak Tiłhini (Northern Chumash) tribe located on the Central California Coast. As a place-based artist, Leah’s kincentric approach seamlessly blends shared iconography with personal imagery, highlighting the impact each has on the other. She uses a diverse range of materials, from synthetic to organic, traditional to modern, to explore the interconnectedness and dependence between land, kinships, and self. She understands that her art is a reflection of the way she prioritizes the protection of traditional materials and the continuation of art forms that are important to her community, which intersect with her individual practice.
Gerardo Monterrubio, https://www.gerardomonterrubio.com/3140507-home
Working in both terracotta and porcelain, Los Angeles-based artist Gerardo Monterrubio (b.1979, México) imbues his ceramic sculptures with complex familial narratives, lived realities and cultural mythologies. drawing with underglaze, Monterrubio envelopes the entirety of his object’s surface in graphic imagery, suffusing his forms with psychological, social and autobiographical import. The artist’s hand-built forms, ranging from lipsticks and male busts to sculptures that recall the Pre-columbian era, offer overlapping stories that recount the unnerving beauty and brutality of bare life.
Carlos Heredia, https://www.akambaarts.com/
Carlos Akamba Heredia is a California-based artist hailing from Oxnard. Carlos has a BFA in Ceramics from Kansas City Art Institute (Kansas City, MO). Carlos draws inspiration from his dreams, nature, human connection, and death. His artistic practice is a continual pursuit of a visual language that can convey the innermost aspects of his being. Carlos has been exploring materials such as clay, oil pastel, oil paint, watercolor and ink. He perceives his work as a living organism, a piece of himself that has been reborn. Carlos has shown work at various locations such as: California Conference for the Advancement of Ceramic Arts (Davis, CA), Santa Paula Art Museum (Santa Paula, CA) and Guilin China International Woodfired Conference (Guilin, China), H&R Block Artspace (Kansas City, MO).
Daniela Garcia Hamilton, https://www.danigarciaart.com/
Daniela Garcia Hamilton (b.1995) is a first generation Mexican-American painter. Her work revisits the rituals and traditions she experienced as a child of immigrant parents. Color and pattern is integrated throughout her work as she describes the vibrancy of her cultural traditions through portraits of her family members. Settings are fabricated to draw attention to shifts in immigration policies, each shift in color for the backgrounds represents the color her family home in Guanajuato was painted, at the time of the policy change. Contemporary American tile patterns are used as the veil through which she remembers these events. As she went through her higher education at CSULB, she began to reflect on her traditions through the American lens. She received her BFA in Drawing and Painting from CSULB in 2018, shortly after she received her Teaching Credential from there as well. She currently works full time as a High School Art teacher in Thousand Oaks. Her work has been exhibited throughout the California Coast, with galleries such as Artbug Gallery, TAG Gallery, Luna Anais Gallery, Artshare LA and the Irvine Fine Arts Center. Daniela is represented by Residency Art Gallery in Inglewood CA.
Andrew Mcilvainehttps://www.andrewmcilvaine.com/
Andrew Mcilvaine is a Mexican American interdisciplinary artist. Born in San Antonio, Texas, and later moved to Missouri, Mcilvaine creates work about displacement and replacement and how these issues effect both cultural and personal memory, identity, and a sense of self. Mcilvaine earned his BA in studio art from the University of Missouri – Kansas City. After receiving his BA, Mcilvaine moved to St. Louis, Missouri, where he attained his MFA from Washington University in St. Louis in painting and drawing. Currently, Mcilvaine lives and works in Kansas City and holds a visiting lecturer position in the foundation program at KCAI.
Maxine Lemuz, http://www.maxinelemuz.org/
“My paintings, sculptures and stop motion films suggest ideas of self-reflection, the grotesque and microcosms. These formations are hauntings of daily life absorbed within anxiety, numbness and unease of futurity. During my initial process of painting, I allow aspects to exist and then render some of their features to become evident to the viewer. Inspired by pareidolic formations found in popcorn ceilings and similar surfaces, I am interested in the depth and movement within the crevices of the texture that is created in my paintings. Pierrot clowns, marionettes and other theatrical characters are integral to my work. I am compelled by these characters as they are both ambiguous and non-binary. My utilization of playful colors allows a juxtaposition to exist in my work, as a dark painting with a sense of comeliness. I capture these figures in vulnerable moments of isolation, self reflection and existential dread. I use various mediums such as clay, popcorn ceiling paste, stop motion film, music and painting to create multilayers to my other worldliness. The ability to manipulate and use clay is prominent in both my paintings and my stop motion films. Clay allows me to add layers of texture to my work, creating a significant aspect of depth. The handmade animation ability of stop motion creates a consciousness of a numbing state of staticness with an unease of movement. I use the essence of haunting dreams to recreate the eerie sensation that is found in all my stop motions and is translated into my paintings. The characters and overall sensation of my films bleed into my paintings and vise-versa.”
Josué Daniel Vásquez 
Josué Daniel Vásquez is a Zapotec Chicano-identifying self-taught artist from Oxnard, California. As they possess no formal education in art, they have previously described their creative process as an affordable hobby that serves as an outlet for self-expression. Their artwork ranges from intimate compositions that explore cultural identity through the perception of surrealism and psychedelic-inspired elements with the incorporation of bright colors to statement pieces that speak to the experience of the indigenous migration community residing across the Central Coast. Aside from using bold colors in their compositions, many of their pieces feature textured patterns created through layered acrylic paint. Josué has described this as a tangible experience using our sense of touch to enjoy the artwork.
Crystal Michelle Castañeda
Crystal Michelle Castañeda is a multi-talented artist, illustrator, surrealist painter, and art educator based in Ventura County. She earned her Associates Degree in Studio Arts from Ventura College in 2019 and has exhibited her work at venues such as Bell Arts Factory, All Kinds Studio, Camp Familiar, and Open Door Studio. After losing her grandmother, Crystal was struck by the question: “When we die, does our consciousness continue to exist?” This profound question inspired her to create her most recent series of art, which explores the concept of the afterlife. Through her paintings and sketches, Crystal creates a unique and thought-provoking world that offers a glimpse into what the afterlife might look like. She incorporates freeway signs with messages like “Enter At Your Own Risk,” teasing viewers that her afterlife may not be a conventional paradise.
Jacqueline Valenzuela, https://jacquelinevalenzuela.com/
Jacqueline Valenzuela (b. East Los Angeles, CA) received a BFA in Drawing and Painting from California States University Long Beach (2019). Her work has been exhibited throughout the greater Los Angeles area, including the South Gate Museum (South Gate), Brea Gallery (Brea), South Pasadena City Hall Gallery (Pasadena), The Mexican Center for Culture and Cinematic Arts of the Mexican Consulate (Los Angeles), ArtShare L.A. (Los Angeles), and most recently at Mercury Project (San Antonio,TX) for, “L.A. To S.A.” an exhibition curated around the theme of exploring the art practices of a diverse group of artists whose work honed in on the idea of home, familiarity, and comfort. Ultimately giving viewers a glimpse of the interconnectedness that Latine communities throughout the country have.
Pamela Pacheco, https://pamelapachecoart.webnode.page/
Pamela Pacheco (b.2000) is a latinx-queer artist from Los Angeles whose work is an interdisciplinary exploration of beauty, pain and experience. They attended art school throughout their teens, participated in a three month pre-college course at the San Francisco Art Institute(2016) enrolled one year at School of the Art Institute of Chicago before going to East LA College. Pacheco has since then (2019) been practicing licensed body art, tattooing and piercings, which incorporates the body as an organic practice. Their work has been displayed in multiple galleries in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Ventura, Oxnard and Chicago from 2012-2022.
Cesar Aldana, https://sketchcrow.com/
Cesar Aldana is a skilled artist based in Ventura County who works with oils, acrylics, graphic design illustration, tattoos and printmaking. Born in Los Angeles but raised in Oxnard, Cesar gravitated to art at an early age through his love of cartoon images and comic books where he would spend countless hours recreating characters from his favorite artists such as Todd McFarlane and Walt Disney. His interest and talent for art developed during his teenage years and would later broaden at Cal State University of Channel Islands and while studying abroad at Paris Academy of Art. Cesar would go on to receive his B.A. at CSUCI in Studio Art, Art History and a Digital Media Arts certificate. Cesar finds inspiration through music, travel, current events and Mexican culture where he enjoys juxtaposing these components and creating images that convey elements of propaganda and traditional art. He has participated in many art exhibitions and appreciates lending his talents to the community.
Emilia Cruz, https://emiliacruz.com/portfolio
Emilia Cruz is a first generation Mexican American artist born in San Diego, Ca, 1993; currently residing in Simi Valley, Ca. Cruz is enrolled in the Illustration program at Art Center College of Design. She teaches art classes for kids at Plaza de la Raza’s Cultural Center for the Arts and Education, located in Lincoln Heights, Los Angeles, CA. She was recently commissioned by CNN en Español for Proyecto Ser Humano (Humanity Project), as well as a Netflix series called Gente-fied, and was asked to design a mural for Netflix Selena: The Series. Her latest work featured in “Futuro Pasado”, a two-person exhibition with Rick Ortega at the historic Boathouse Gallery at Plaza de la Raza has received an outstanding critical response. “My work exemplifies the importance of representation, specifically as a woman of color. I am exploring different ways in which I can depict vulnerability, self-healing, and empowerment.”
Austin Carlos Gutierrez, https://austincarlo.com/
Jose Galvan


There is ample free parking, admission to the Gallery is free. Visit studiochannelislands.org or call 805-383-1368 for full details



June 3 (Saturday) - July 29 (Saturday)


Studio Channel Islands Art Center

2222 Ventura Blvd