In the catalogue for the landmark traveling exhibition “Chicano Art: Resistance and Affirmation” (1991-1993), Mel Casas affirmed his goal of making Chicano art “relevant to EVERYONE: AN ICONIC REALITY.” Here, the late Chicano artist presented a diagram that outlined the process he believed would take Chicano art into the dominant culture. Artists would have to balance both national art criteria and Chicano art, and correlate both with “the reality of human needs.” Borrowing from this idea, Ruiz-Healy Art will present an exhibition of Casas’ work with pieces from his seminal Humanscapes series along with smaller works that showcase the artist’s more painterly applications. As co-founder of the San Antonio Artist collective Con Safos, and professor emeritus at San Antonio College (where he taught for 29 years), Casas is considered one of the most significant Chicano artists of the past century whose work challenged racial stereotypes of Mexican Americans. Casas’ Humanscapes, a large-scale series of cinematically inspired paintings completed between 1965 and 1989, is considered one of the longest painting series in American art. Free, 6-8pm (on view through Nov. 25), Ruiz-Healy Art, 201 E. Olmos Drive, (210) 804-2219, ruizhealyart.com.
— Marco Aquino