Francisco Domínguez

Being a Chicano artist is something that I take to heart very seriously. The power of images, whether in film, billboards or magazines, has a profound effect on how we see ourselves within this high tech, media-based society. Although I am primarily a photographer, I work in other mediums, such as silkscreen, acrylic painting, mural painting, mixed media and poetry. Art and the creative process that goes with it are things that I have found to be beneficial to my growth as an artist. Many of the basic things in life that come from our indigenous bloodlines have been put aside or discarded due to the conquest and the pull of assimilation. I feel that our relationship to “Mother Earth” and the infinite universe are things that we have to regain and bring back into our lives and artistic world views. Over the past 16 years my work has included indigenous people, farm workers, Chicano boxers and avant garde jazz musicians. The focus of my artwork has been to bring light to injustice and inequality as well as to inspire, educate and to instill pride within our beautiful people and communities.


In the summer of 1990 I had the opportunity to travel to southern Mexico and Guatamala as a photographer. I went there with the group, Witnesses For Peace, which had awarded me a scholarship to attend this fact-finding mission to Guatamalan Refugee Camps in Chiapas and then to indigenous Mayan communities in Guatamala. The poster, “Chiapas,” was made as a recognition of the plight of the Mayan refugees in Chiapas, as well as other countries in the world they fled to in an attempt to escape the brutal military regimes they have historically lived under. I specifically remember, while visiting and photographing at this camp, small orphaned children asking me to take them back to the United States. They said they would ride in the trunk of the VW bug I had rented in San Cristobal de las Casas. I will never forget these beautiful Mayan people.

Despierta Raza

This poster was made in the spirit of honoring Mother Earth. As indigenous mestizo Chicanos, I feel it is our spiritual as well as biological responsibility to care for and defend her. Everything that we need for sustaining our lives is supplied by her, whether it be energy, food, clothing, shelter and water; all basic things. I also realize that as an oppressed people in this country, we often do not have the luxury to form and or be part of environmental organizations because of the socio-economic conditions we live in. Therefore, I reiterate, “Despierta Raza,” Mother Earth has always been there for us, so let’s take care of her!