This article appeared in the November 2017 issue of Texas Monthly with the headline “Diaz on Display.”
Despite the ravages of Hurricane Harvey, the Houston art community remains a vital point of transmission between Texas and the global art world. This month, the David Shelton Gallery presents new works by Alejandro Diaz, a San Antonio native associated with the rascuache art–making style, which embraces cheap, vernacular forms of Chicano cultural expression. Diaz’s art has grown over the years from bare-bones cardboard signs marked with sly slogans like “I beg to differ” to works constructed out of more expensive materials, with broader aesthetic possibilities. In A Can for All Seasons, Diaz lined a major thoroughfare in the Bronx with planters painted to look like Mexican-brand canned goods, evoking both a homespun style of potting flowers and a rapidly globalizing Mexican-American consumer culture. More recently, Diaz has reinvented his practice; the new show features paintings in dialogue with great works of the modern era, including El Grito, below, a send-up of Edvard Munch’s famous The Scream.
Through November 11, David Shelton Gallery, 4411 Montrose Boulevard, Suite B, Houston