“Our Americana,” a solo show by Atlanta, Ga.-based artist Chloe Alexander, is the latest exhibit at Gallery 1202 in downtown Gilroy, running Aug. 19 through Oct. 2.
In this show, Alexander strives to create an alternative narrative to the traditional “Americana,” illustrating young people of color either in physical motion or in poses of contemplation, using various printmaking techniques.
“Americana is a term that evokes a specific imagery in the minds of many,” she said. “Perhaps it is a scene that is reminiscent of a Norman Rockwell painting—a family joyfully enjoying a meal together, children exploring the outdoors, or a quintessential moment between a boy and his dog. While these images are inherently wholesome and nostalgic, there are many of us who are unable to envision ourselves in these scenes. We too, are American—whether our ancestors arrived here by force, or immigrated in the pursuit of freedom and opportunity—and yet, despite having played a fundamental part of the building of this country, we are often omitted or erased from the visual canon.
“Conversely, rather than being associated with images of wholesome purity, our stories are routinely characterized as being traumatic and saddled by oppression. However, our histories, our lives are not a monolith. They are diverse, complex and meaningful, and frequently untold. Our Americana is a counter-narrative to the prevailing belief that our lives are not worthy of celebration and joy. They are uniquely American in both their nuance, and their ability to prevail beyond what is known or expected.”
The show will take place at Gallery 1202, 7363 Monterey St. in Gilroy, from Aug. 19 through Oct. 2. The opening reception will take place on Aug. 19 from 6-9pm, and the closing reception will be held on Oct. 2 from noon to 3pm.