Today we’d like to introduce you to Alejandra Fernandez.
Alejandra, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I am a Mexican American Illustrator & Graphic Designer, born in Mexico and currently living in Los Angeles. I’ve created editorial illustrations for publications such as The New York Times and have won several art awards, including two Society of Illustrators Student Competitions in 2016 & 2017.
From 2017 to 2018 I worked at NOW Art LA as their administrative Assistant and Graphic Designer, managing projects and designing collateral for art events and installations around LA. I’ve worked at several LA art institutions creating, branding and designing educational, art and promotional materials.
In 2017 I graduated from Art Center College of Design with BFA in Illustration Design. I’ve exhibited in group shows around LA in art spaces such as the Museum of Latin American Art, Jr. High Gallery, Leiminspace, East Side Cafe, and more.
I am currently working as a Graphic Designer at the prestigious interior design company Gregorius|Pineo and doing freelance illustration and personal artwork.
Can you give our readers some background on your art?
My work is heavily influenced by ancient and modern Latin American art like Mexican Muralism, Andean Architecture, Aztec and Tarascan indigenous crafts, as well as 30’s American cartoons and vintage anime and contemporary artwork.
An important part of my personal work is researching different cultural motifs, exploring my indigenous roots and Mexican background, and trying to present these themes in a way I feel is honest and unique. I try to factor in how primarily Western and Eurocentric my art education was and be aware of my multi-cultural background.
Hopefully, people see my art as an evolving body of work that is my exploration of my identity, and they see perspectives and stories that haven’t been historically presented at the forefront of art institutions in the US.
What responsibility, if any, do you think artists have to use their art to help alleviate problems faced by others? Has your art been affected by issues you’ve concerned about?
As artists we have the chance to create our own opportunities and collaborate and find our creative communities through social media, through local art events and community spaces. This wasn’t necessarily always the case. We no longer have to wait for a gallery or an agent to represent us in order to get our work discovered. And through social media, we become our own “brand” which can be a good or bad thing depending on who you see it.
As an immigrant woman of color, some of the current political events have affected my daily life, and that influences my work and comes out in either subtle or not-so-subtle ways. Just representing other cultures that I identify with becomes a sort of act of activism as I try to raise awareness and educate others on my background and that I exist and that my work deserves to be shown in art and community spaces.
What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
Next group exhibition will be at Hey There Projects in Joshua Tree, California – Opening May 23rd 2019:
- Website: https://www.alitabonita.com
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bonita_alita/
Vases Riso Zine Cover – Risograph zine printed with Neverpress Publishing, rise
Encarnacion – Color Pencil Work
NY Times Illustration – for their article “A Moment in Mexico” featuring six-short docs by Mexican filmmakers, digital
Cumbia Cosmica – Playlist cover for the All in A Week Collective, digital
Ok – Tarascan Coyote Statue piece, digital