Artist: Dulce Soledad Ibarra
Exhibition: Manos De Oro
Media: Sculpture, Video, Multi-media
Gallery: Gatov Gallery East
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Dulce is an undergraduate student at CSU Long Beach working toward her Bachelor of Fine Arts under the sculpture department. Her home in the United States with her immediate family lies in Chico, California, while her extended family lives in Mexico. Dulce’s family has a background of hard physical labor, but they have proudly used it to earn themselves a comfortable lifestyle.
When you first glance in the gallery, you notice the colors green and gold. The objects in the gallery are tools used for landscaping, such as a shovel, rake, and lawn mower. These objects were placed around the room in such a way that made the viewer feel as if they were in a museum looking at historical artifacts of high value. A video was playing of Dulce’s father doing his landscaping work, and the viewer could see the content expression on his face and hear him whistling a song while he did his work.
The landscaping tools were decorated in gold to show how to Dulce and her family, as well as may others, they are more than just tools to maintain a yard. They are tools used to make a living and create art, therefore they carry the value of gold. Hiding inside one of the piles of yard waste in the corner of the room was a gold casting of Dulce’s father’s hands. She illustrated that “all hands are made of gold, but some hands are left invisible under the sun, covered in grease and the greenery of another man’s land.”
SYNTHESIS / MY EXPERIENCE
Dulce’s work is beautiful to look at, and the meaning behind it is even more beautiful. Through hard, physical labor, her family earns their living. While many American families obtain their gold through taking advantage of other people, Dulce’s family earns their gold with their hands, which makes it much more valuable. Her representation of hard-working hands as gold attempts to give viewers a deeper appreciation of physical labor than they might already have.