Chicano Park Takeover

Casteneda, Roger Lucero, 1978
Renovated, 1991: Guillermo Rosete, Felipe Adame, Octavio Gonzalez, Vidal Aguirre

……..Chicano Park Takeover documents the history of the physical takeover of park land on April 22, 1970. Most of the imagery was based on actual newspaper photographs and slides of the twelve-day occupation of the land.
……..The horizontal member of the pylon illustrates the community coming together in their efforts to cultivate the land, to have plants grow, to prepare a park for their neighborhood, as the Coronado Bay Bridge vanishes into the horizon. A child has climbed a lamp pole from which he hangs the flag of Aztlan with the three-faced image of the Indian, the Spanish, and the Mestizo, designed by Guillermo Aranda. The kiosk now occupies the land where the flag was first raised.
…….. Moving down the vertical member, park activists stopped the bulldozers that had begun grading the land for a California Highway Patrol station. The lower section of the pylon presents a bird s-eye-view of Chicano Park with the kiosk, the bridge, and separate bridge pylons, including the mural of the Farmworker Family. The Tarahumara Indian carrying a torch refers to an ancient race, a variation of which is held in the barrio every December. When discussing the imagery of Chicano Park Takeover with Salvador Torres, he expressed the importance of having authenticity in Chicano art. He pointed out the Mestizo flag, explaining that Guillermo Rosete had originally painted the Mexican flag.

"Let's understand something here about the Chicano Park Murals. There is a cultural nationalism that is coming through that may be important and it also may be over shadowing what is really important to us as individuals who were born and raised in this country as well as to those individuals who have immigrated to this country. But in terms of cultural nationalism, even if it s Chicano cultural nationalism, or Mexican nationalism, or American nationalism, there is an element in the arts that finds its way as an expression of nationalism. And I told Guillermo, "Guillermo, if we re going to restore our work here, I want you to authenticate our history. That was not the Mexican flag that went up on that pole."