The MexiCali Biennial presents UN/belonging in the Land of Milk & Honey, a two-person exhibition by biennial co-founders Ed Gomez and Luis G. Hernandez and guest curated by art historian and curator Emmanuel Ortega. This project is hosted by Best Practice Gallery in San Diego.
Under the rhetoric of empire, and to use the words of scholar Hazel Carby, belonging functions as a way to settle with colonization—giving us the impression that its violence has somehow been resolved. Throughout history, the role of landscape representation has functioned similarly; it has sought to enclose nature as a place where bodies are meant to belong “naturally.” But the dimensions of how, why, when and who belongs in these spaces has shifted through time. The distortion consists precisely in naturalizing which identities belong (and do not belong) to certain landscapes. Both, the art of Ed Gomez and Luis G. Hernandez place the meaning of Landscape to an active verb, that is, they highlight the natural environment as process, raising the questions, why, what, when, and who landscapes. In this exhibition, UN/belonging in the Land of Milk & Honey Gomez and Hernandez’s active artistic inquiries disrupt the fixity of belonging by manipulating the conventions of landscape representation.