Artist Statement: Growing up I often felt alone because of the lack of representation and support for young queer people of color. As a queer indigenous person, I struggled to find others like me who were out, proud and celebrating their culture dressed in vibrant queerness. I used to paint and write poetry as a means to escape the pain, fear, depression and frustration from the lack of community and family I had but today, I paint my community, culture, and from a place of joy. I want to show other queer people of color and people in general that they are not alone and so I paint portraits of people who are making a positive difference in our community. As a poet, the titles of my work are lines from poems I have written that I feel have taken on new life through the paintings. I use the juxtaposition of realism and whimsical elements to tell stories which invoke emotions, memories and dreams. I challenge myself and observers to be unafraid of life by allowing themselves to be consumed by the vivid colors in my work which represent growth, love, and life. My work is a symbol of who I am and the unwillingness to compromise the elements which make me, me -- my culture, my queerness, my brownness, my indigeneity, all of me.
Artist Bio: Edgar-Arturo Camacho-González is a queer Xicano community activist, artist, and poet living on occupied Ohlone land in Vallejo, CA. He is committed to making the communities he is part of safe, vibrant and welcoming for all by creating work that celebrates who he is without compromising his identity. His work is a celebratory ode of representation for queer people and people of color. Edgar-Arturo’s work has been published in several anthologies, and he has exhibited throughout the West Coast. Edgar-Arturo is a co-founder of El Comalito Collective Cultural Arts Center and is the Chair of the Vallejo Food & Art Walk.