“Masks, Memories and a Life Well-Lived” Latino Center of Art & Culture exhibition open through Nov. 26

“Bella (Oax Botttle Cap Girl)” Oax = Oaxaca / Photo by Ruben Reveles

The Latino Center of Art and Culture, Sacramento’s non-profit Latino art and cultural center, opened a special Dia de los Muertos/Day of the Dead exhibition “Masks, Memories and a Life Well-Lived” and will run through Saturday, Nov. 26.

The exhibition features over 50 traditional Mexican masks, images from Dia de los Muertos in Oaxaca, Mexico by photographer Ruben Reveles, and a memorial to Joanne Marie Sonn who passed away in 2014 from breast cancer. The masks from different regions in Mexico are a small part of a significant gift to LCAC from Nar Bustamante, a private collector and owner/founder Nar Design Group​ Sacramento. The entire collection numbers over three hundred authentic ceremonial masks from Mexico and are works of considerable age. Several are from the late 1800s and the majority
are from the 1920s -1950s.

Interwoven amongst the masks are striking photographs from Sacramento artist Ruben Reveles. “I got serious about photography in 2008 during a trip to Mexico. I was there to finally find, and meet, family members that I’d long heard about. I only meant to use my camera to document my travel, and I was unprepared for how inspired I’d become by the colors and culture of Mexico,” says Reveles.

He has since returned to Mexico many times and continued to photograph his experiences. “And, as the years have passed, I’ve experimented and tried earnestly to find a medium and technique that best captures the light and energy that exists in those moments.”

Many in Sacramento who have visited the wildly popular new eatery, Cantina Alley in Midtown, will be familiar with his photographs – a commanding photo of a Cantina is the center image behind the bar. The long bar top itself was designed by Reveles and features his photo images on hundreds of colorful handmade tiles.

A Life Well Lived is an ofrenda dedicated to Joanne Marie Sonn or “Jo” to her friends and colleagues. Jo was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1996 and passed away in 2014. Jo was part of a larger community of artists, performers, intellectuals and activists in San Francisco from the 1970s to the 1990s.

She touched lives from London literary circles to San Francisco’s Pickle Family Circus, from art historians to research scientists, and every day at home or in her wide travels. Jo’s unique genius of nurturing deep personal connections, her wit and intellect are greatly missed. ​​

About Nar Bustamante: Founder of Nar Design Group was recently awarded as one of the Top 50 Kitchen and Bath Business innovators in the country. His dedication to the growing arts culture in Sacramento will be bench marked with his new East Sacramento Design center opening in 2018.

Located at 2700 Front St., the hours for the Latino Center of Art and Culture are as follows: Tuesday through Saturday from 12:30 to 6 p.m. For more information, call 446-5133.

The center is a mulch-disciplinary cultural center and public space serving the Sacramento Community by offering Latino, Chicano, and Native arts programming, art education workshops, and a community gathering place. LCAC is a center of cultural pride, self-governance, self-expression and community empowerment through the arts. We remain a public space where young and old come to pass on their stories, share their challenges, create art and build community.

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