“Profiling Made Visible: The Art of Mark Anthony Martinez & Michael Martinez,” an exhibition organized by veteran curator David S. Rubin, opens with a reception from 5:30-8:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 4 at Bihl Haus Arts, 2803 Fredericksburg Road. The exhibition features photography, video, installation, and performance works that focus on issues relating to the widespread but rarely talked about prevalence of racism and homophobia in contemporary American society.
Growing up on San Antonio’s South Side, brothers Mark Anthony Martinez and Michael Martinez were accustomed to living in a predominantly Mexican-American culture. When they left San Antonio to attend art school in Portland, Oregon, they experienced, for the first time, what it was like to be part of a minority population. Mark Anthony, who is the darker complexioned of the two, describes himself as “off-white [tenuously Latino, non-white, non-Black and non-affiliated indigenous], cisgender, hetero-performing, male.” His younger brother, Michael, is openly queer and identifies with the relatively new moniker, latinx. While living in Portland, it was not uncommon for either of the brothers to encounter racial or homophobic slurs being hurled their way.
Mark Anthony received his BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2011 and his MFA from Portland State University in 2014. He is currently the Visual Arts Director at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center in San Antonio. Michael received his BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2013.
The exhibition, funded in part by a grant from the City of San Antonio Department for Culture and Creative Development and by Friends of Bihl Haus Arts, continues through July 9, 2016.
Saturday, June 4, 2016, 5:30-8:30 p.m: Opening Reception, featuring a performance, live music, food and libations.
Saturday, June 11, 2 p.m.: “Queer Disclosure: Identity, Biopolitics and Medical Practice,” a gallery talk by Will Robertson: Inspired by queer Latinx artist Michael Martinez’s exploration of “the function of stereotypes—how they come to inform law and the imagination of North America—in the age of state-sanctioned racial profiling,” this talk addresses the sociocultural effects of making queerness visible in medical environments. Robertson writes: “I explore the ways medical practice makes some categories of sex/gender, sexuality and race more or less visible than others through an examination of queer identity disclosure in medical settings. Drawing on the work of French social theorist Michel Foucault, I argue these acts of disclosure make queer bodies categorizable and thus more intelligible, countable, and controllable.”
Will Robertson is in a Ph.D. student in the School of Anthropology at the University of Arizona focusing on medical anthropology and gender studies. He earned his BA and MA degrees in anthropology at UTSA, where he also taught courses on anthropology, sociolinguistics, kinship and gender. His dissertation research examines how the practice of medicine shapes cultural beliefs and understandings of gender and sexuality.
Saturday, June 18, 2 p.m.: “Dialog/Diálogo” a gallery conversation led by guest curator David S. Rubin and featured artists Mark Anthony Martinez and Michael Martinez.
Saturday, June 25, 2 p.m.: “Queer Poetry,” a reading organized by Michael Martinez and featuring poets Elizabeth Rodriguez, Anel Flores, Jo Reyes-Boitel & Michael Martinez.