Contact: Contact: Lydia Etman, Cell (818) 921-5795 and Focus on the Masters (805) 582-1181
Free lecture on March 3, 2009 from 12-1:30pm in Room HSS 202 on Moorpark College Campus
In association with Focus on the Masters, a non-profit art education organization of Ventura, Moorpark College is offering a lecture by George Yepes, Artist and Muralist, on March 3rd 2009 in room HSS 202 on the second story of the Humanities and Social Science Building on the Moorpark college campus.
Born in Tijuana, Mexico, George Yepes moved to East Los Angeles at the age of four. He earned a degree from California State University, Los Angeles, in business administration, and joined the Public Art Center, leaving behind his hard street life and gang membership. He also took painting classes at East Los Angeles City College and worked both as an accountant and a muralist.
One of the more prolific painters in the Chicano Mural Movement of the late 70's, Yepes worked with notorious Chicano collaboratives such as “Los Four” and "East Los Streetscapers." Since he started working solo, he has painted over 800,000 square feet of eloquent social, historical, and sacred images onto the facades of everything from churches, hospitals and freeway overpasses to album covers. George Yepes has worked on a large project for the Metro Red Line of Los Angeles Subway in partnership with Mexican Architect Ricardo Legoreta. Large mural commissions include “The Promise” mural on the 70' vaulted ceiling of the State Archives Museum in Sacramento and a 24'x70' mural in Chicago. His 28 murals are landmarks in Los Angeles, as are the 21 murals his Academia de Arte Yepes students have painted.
Yepes established Academia de Arte Yepes, the first free mural academy for young students in Los Angeles. He has taught nearly 1500 low-income students over the last decade through the Academia. It is a 10-year training program, and has won many awards. In January 2008, the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena unveiled murals created by Yepes Academia’s students. The "Cassini Instrument Operations" murals were painted over a 6 month period at the Academia de Arte Yepes in Downtown Los Angeles, and permanently installed at JPL. 340 feet of murals created from four years of Cassini science research was visualized by the young artists. This was for a 2007 Summer/Fall class which title was "Fine Art Painting - For Lifers Only."
Besides murals, Yepes creates religious iconography via his "re-imagination of the sacred", ethereally beautiful women, modern street violence, Chicano and Mexican Folklore/Elitelore, world history, and literature in powerful - sexually charged - atmospheres. His paintings have been collected by a widely diverse audience, from Sean Penn, Cheech Marin, Anthony Keidis, and Robert Rodriguez to Catholic churches on the east side of L.A., and City Governments nationally.
In Dec. 2001 the Chicano Visions/ American Painters on the Verge exhibit spearheaded by Cheech Marin, began a fifteen city tour with plans in the making to travel to Europe and Japan. The exhibit museums: The San Antonio Museum of Art in Texas; The Smithsonian in Washington DC.; the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, New Mexico; the El Paso Museum of Art in Texas; the Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, La Jolla, CA; the Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis, MN; The Mexican Fine Arts Museum, Chicago, IL; the University of Houston, Houston, Texas; Saint Louis Science Center, Saint Louis, MO; The de Young Fine Arts Museum, San Francisco, CA; Fort Lauderdale Museum of Art, Fort Lauderdale, FL; and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Los Angeles, CA.
Yepes has exhibited in 12 solo and 45 group shows at venues that have included the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Sitges-Barcelona Olympics Exhibit. He had designed more than 30 public murals as well as an album cover for Los Lobos, a Grammy Award winning music group from East Los Angeles. Titled “La Pistola y el Corazon,” the cover has won numerous awards, and is in many museum collections. Sean Penn and Madonna bought the original painting for a record-breaking sum in 1989, only to be destroyed in the Malibu Fire. Yepes’ work can be seen in the traveling exhibition, “Chicano Visions: American Painters on the Verge,” from the Cheech Marin collection. Currently he is featured in the “Bold Caballeros y Noble Bandidas at the Autry National Center of the American West at Griffith Park in Los Angeles, until May 10.
Moorpark College, 7075 Campus Road, Moorpark, CA 93021 (805) 378 -1400