Isidro Pérez García

Campesino Urbano Artist

Artwork at “Cuídate Mucho” at LBCC


“Cuídate Mucho” opens on Thurs, Oct 27, 2022 at Long Beach City College art gallery, from 5-7pm

“All that you touch you change.
All that you change changes vou…God is change.”
-Octavia E. Butler, Parable of the Sower

Cuidate Mucho is a group exhibition centered on care as a life-sustaining and life-giving force. The title of the exhibition, Cuidate Mucho, translates from Spanish to English as: Take much care of yourself. It is a valediction phrase that combines both care and caution, implying a threat or harm is near. The phrase is often used to wish a loved one for a favorable outcome; for example wishing for someone’s safe return home. Concurrently, it is also used to hope for someone’s improved health and wellbeing. As we all became accustomed to living with the corona virus, cuidate mucho was so often heard that it lost its meaning. It was during the pandemic that we became significantly aware of the power of care; caring for others, and for one’s own health became essential to our survival. As we emerge from the pandemic, black and brown communities continue to be the most vulnerable. The artists in Cuidate Mucho reflect on some of the threats that affect communities of color such as the prison industrial complex, immigration, unfair labor practices, racism, and gender-based violence. The artists offer solutions that are centered on care, love, and tenderness.

My work in the exhibition:

ChiloTe Codex, 2018. Accordion-style book from thrift store, pencil, cochinilla harvested from a local park and my backyard.

The ChiloTe Codex shows iconography that symbolizes stories of immigrant diaspora, creating lines of continuity between existences and relationships abruptly divided by a border crossing. Cochinilla was used for thousands of years by the Aztec and Maya peoples to make intense red- and purple-colored dyes. However, even though the insect grows commonly on nopales all around Southern California, their presence is not well-known, even among people who have immigrated here from regions where cochinilla has a long history. This is why I created the codex using cochinilla harvested from the landscape around me – literally from suburban spaces – as a way of activating the living biocultural archive that exists in our relationship with cochinilla, despite the distorting force of borders.

Subi-Baja / See-Saw Printing Press, 2016. Recycled materials, found objects.

The See-Saw Printing Press was created for Travieso Press, a collaborative community bookmaking project that brought together Santa Ana writers, artists, and residents to produce a series of community-written and community-published children’s picture books, handmade through cartonera-style publishing. One of four different presses created for the project, the Subi-Baja / See-Saw Printing Press was featured as part of the “Recycled Language” project at the Hammer Museum in 2016. Travieso Press was a project of Workshop for Community Arts, developed collaboratively by Isidro Pérez García & Adriana Sánchez Alexander.

Cuídate Mucho is curated by Karla Aguíniga, Art Gallery and Exhibitions Manager. Curatorial and exhibition support by Ash Norman ’23, Erica Brannon ’23, Michol Loeffler ’23, and Joshua Blatt-Kodesh.

Artists in the exhibition:

Andrea Aragon
Tanya Aguíniga
Jackie Amézquita
AMBOS Ceramics
Maria Gaspar
Ken Gonzales-Day
Alfonso Gonzalez Jr
Jeremiah Henderson
Alberto Lule
Jennessa I Martínez
Narsiso Martínez
noé olivas
Isidro Pérez García
Emilio Rojas
Miko Revereza