Artist: Dulce Soledad Ibarra
Exhibition: Manos De Oro
Media: Mixed Media Installation
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery East
About the Artist
Dulce Soledad Ibarra, twenty-five year old is from Chino, California and is currently living in Long Beach, California. She is an undergraduate student in the School of Art’s Sculpture Program at CSULB. At first she was interested in pursing her studies in the field of Graphic Design or Communications. However, she then realized she was very passionate in the field of art and decided to major in Sculpture. Before attending CSULB, Ibarra went to Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga where she received her AA degree.
Ibarra’s exhibition, Manos De Oro is an installation with mixed media. She used different gardening machines and equipment as well as a video projection of her father to portray her message. The gardening machines and equipment are painted in gold which gives everything a very shiny look. Some of the gardening equipment is on the floor and some is hanging on the walls. The gardening equipment that is on the floor is on top of a circular layer of green material which looks like grass. There is a rectangular piece of the green material in front of the video projection. Finally, a pile of grass and leaves wrapped around a brown cloth is on two corners of the caller where the video is playing.
Manos De Oro is a reminder that all hands are made of gold despite of the type of labor they do. Ibarra artwork was inspired by her hard working father. Her father is a Mexican immigrant that came to the United States in search of a better opportunities for his family. Ibarra explained that when she was younger she was ashamed of her father’s job as a gardener. As she grew up she thought otherwise and truly valued her father’s sacrifices and hard work. The video projection of her father doing gardening work was included to show the type of labor he does. The gardening machines and equipment were painted gold as a symbol to express the value of her father’s hard working hands. This exhibition was done to show her pride in her father and all of his labor to get his family where they are now.
Manos De Oro was very insightful because I was able to connect with Ibarra. My father is also a Mexican immigrant and I really understood the struggle of her father’s hard work that Ibarra portrayed in her work. When my father first came to the United States, he worked long hours picking strawberries in the fields of Oxnard, California. He would leave really early in the morning and would come home until the night. He would even work weekends and on rainy days. He said nothing stopped him because he had to work to provide for my mom and I. I definitely agree with Ibarra’s statement that the labor of many people are left invisible, yet their hards show all the hard work and sacrifices they make to get to a better place.