Activism, and Scholarship

Association for Jotería Arts,

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Eileen Jimenez Bio:

The art I create is influenced by my many intersecting identities and lived experiences. Even though I grew up in extreme poverty in Anaheim, California, art-filled my house. My siblings and I spent days re-creating the art we admired on TV or in the black and white copies of paintings my mom photocopied from the public library and taped around the house. As I navigated my higher education experiences, my art saved me when I felt overwhelmed by the pressure of working full time and going to school full time. I’ve always found myself gravitating towards art, making art for my friends and family but always reminding myself that my art was not real art, because I did not have formal art training. Throughout the years I have realized that I don’t need formal training for the art I create. My soul speaks through my art. I create the art I wish I would have seen and had access to as a girl from the 'hood. In my art, I see myself and the stories and the strength of my ancestors. In my art you will see the aesthetics of my Mexican and Otomi heritage and Queer influences- you see the visual representation of my soul, and the colors, the culture, the visions and the dreams that live there.

Featured Artist:   Eileen Jimenez

Oregon Conference 2019:

Entre ríos y fronteras: Reframing Jotería Futurity and Kinship

Artist's Statement on piece for AJAAS:

Developing this artwork for the 2019 AJAAS conference has been a true honor. From the beginning it was very important to create something that embodied the conference mission and themes. I was so inspired by the community of activists, scholars, artists and leaders that make AJAAS such an incredible space. The theme "Entre ríos y fronteras: Reframing Jotería Futurity and Kinship" was continually on my mind as I brainstormed imagery throughout my artistic process with the conference committee. In this artwork you will see various representations of the female form, various shades, and various identities represented. You will also see images of Portland's 

Multnomah Falls, Mt. Hood and the Fremont Bridge since it was important to represent the conference theme and location. You will also see monarch butterflies and cacti to honor the beauty of migration and of the concept of nepantla. Each of these people represent the efforts of different movements and advocacy. I am a mixed media artist and this artwork is typical of my art. The sky was created by hand carving linoleum and hand printing on rice paper, the portraits and other images were created using ink and acrylic paint on vellum paper and cardstock.