Jessica Alazraki 

Art Statement

As a Mexican woman living in New York, I feel it is my responsibility to open up a dialogue about immigrants. The figures I show in my pictures convey every-day stories of immigrants living in America, mainly members of the Latinx communities. Bright colors, flat spaces, and empathetically-rendered figures are all visual entryways to the works, often immediately recognizable by Mexican immigrants. The imagery is accessible to a mainstream audience. Narratives remind the viewer of shared experiences with an eye for humanizing a community that is often invisible.

I’m currently working on a series of paintings using colorful tablecloths, a ubiquitous symbol of colorful Mexican folk art. I try to tell a story and setup a particular relational dynamic in each one. Formally, I am compelled to flatten the spaces of my works, using broad swaths of color or patterns,sometimes the tablecloth itself, to bring the viewer closer to the figures.

My goal is to highlight family values and the unifying factor that comes with being together at the table, sharing a meal, or enjoying other activities that go with it. This theme is significant to me because I believe Latinos need to be accepted and understood.

I worked in the advertising field professionally for years,catering to the US Hispanic market, and I was hired to “make the ads look Mexican.” My pictures are a reaction to that ethos: although pictorially flat,the figures nevertheless persist in living entirely social and familiar lives within.

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