Artist: Dulce Soledad Ibarra
Exhibtion: Manos De Oro
Media: Mixed Media sculpture and video
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov East Gallery
This is Dulce Soledad Ibarra’s last year, she is a senior and will be graduating with a Bachelors in Fine Arts in the Spring, Class of 2017. She is also part of CSULB School of Art Sculpture Program. Dulce plans on applying to graduate school but wants to go out-of-state to experience something new. She is a first generation born Mexican American which has influenced her installation.
Dulce’s installation Manos De Oro which translates to Gold Hands depicts many gardening tools such as a lawn mower, shovel and rake covered in gold. There are also bags of leaves and branches in bags with hidden sculptures of golden hands. A video of a Latino gardener is projected on the wall. There are patches of grass on the floor. Dulce’s installation is dominated by green and gold.
Dulce Soledad Ibarra’s installation Manos de Oro is a reflection of her appreciation of her father’s hard work. Dulce’s father is a Mexican immigrant and works as a gardener to support his family, however when Dulce was young, she was embarrassed by her father’s work. Being a gardener is an underappreciated and negatively connotative occupation, even though they help beautify the community and do it as a means of survival. Dulce has learned that all work is important and you should be proud of what you do, especially when it is for survival. She feels “survivors guilt” because she does not have to struggle and is thriving because of her dad’s sacrifices. Survivor’s guilt is a first-generational experience.
I related to Dulce’s message of survivor’s guilt. I, myself, am a first-generation Mexican American and my father has had to do manual labor as a construction worker and recycling man all my life. I, too, felt embarrassed as a child of my father’s occupation but have learned to appreciate my father and mother’s sacrifices for our family. My siblings and I are a reflection of their hard work and success. I have learned that all jobs, no matter how little, are important and you should be proud of what you do.