We’re pleased to announce the long-awaited opening of our new gallery, The Juan R. Fuentes Gallery, named after local artist, Juan R. Fuentes, in recognition of his enormous and sustained artistic contributions to Acción Latina over the past four decades. The Grand Opening Exhibition, Bridging Time and Place: A Statement in Clay and Color, will feature the work of painter, sculptor, illustrator and designer,
Ruiz will christen the Latino Cultural District’s newest art gallery with a collection of his work across several mediums, including watercolor, etchings and sculpture. The exhibition, which explores themes of cultural resistance, rebirth and transcendence, will run from Dec. 12, 2015 through Jan. 9, 2016.
“I’m honored to have a one-man show in Acción Latina’s new gallery,” said Ruiz. “Given the demographic changes within San Francisco’s Mission District over the past decade, it’s important that community institutions like Acción Latina find ways to preserve and showcase Latino art and cultural traditions. The new art gallery definitely contributes to this goal.”
Michael Ruiz’s work is influenced not only by his background in design and illustration, but also by his heritage and years of study of the ancient cultures of Latin America. Several of the pieces in the exhibition are meant to reflect the religious conflict that still exists for the indigenous peoples of Mexico, Central and South America.
For more than 25 years, Ruiz taught art and art history at City College of San Francisco. He has also taught at Diablo Valley College, Civic Arts of Walnut Creek, and the deYoung Museum. He has developed and taught courses on a variety of subjects including contemporary Latin American art and the ancient art and architecture of Latin America.
About new gallery:
Nestled in the heart of San Francisco’s Latino Cultural District at 2958 24th Street, The Juan R. Fuentes gallery seeks to showcase the work of established and emerging Latino artists as well as that of non-Latino artists whose work depicts the nuances of Latino life locally, nationally and internationally.
The lower exterior wall of the gallery features scaled down, exact replicas of several Maya bas-relief masterpieces. The gallery is surrounded by the vibrancy of Latino culture that has made this area world-renowned and a popular tourist destination. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11AM – 6PM.
“Acción Latina plays an integral role in supporting the Calle 24 Latino Cultural District, a culturally rich and vibrant commercial corridor. Through Mayor Lee’s investment, Acción Latina will continue to be a place where important Latino stories can be shared to inform, educate, and inspire our communities,” said Joaquin Torres, Director of Invest In Neighborhoods, an initiative of the Office of Economic and Workforce Development.