Every year, artist Katie Ruiz creates an ofrenda (altar) at home in honor of Dia de los Muertos, the Mexican holiday to honor deceased loved ones. This year she was commissioned to create one and chose to dedicate it to an artist she holds a deep respect and admiration for—the late Yolanda Lopez, who created decades of work both radical and widely celebrated.
“I chose Yolanda Lopez because I felt it was an opportunity to highlight a Chicana artist and create a learning experience for North County folks who may not have learned about her groundbreaking work,” she says. “It gives me an opportunity to talk about her and then people can go see her work at the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, so it seemed like the perfect time.” (Lopez’s work is on display in the first solo exhibition of her pieces, “Yolanda Lopez: Portrait of the Artist,” and features dozens of works she created between 1975 and 1988, most while attending UC San Diego.)
Ruiz’s ofrenda honoring Lopez is a community effort with about 100 collaborating volunteers and is part of the San Diego Botanic Garden’s Fall Festival, taking place from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. today and Oct. 31 at the garden in Encinitas. Ruiz, 37, is an artist who does a lot of work with figure painting and sculpture, incorporating elements and objects from nature into her work. She lives in La Mesa and took some time to talk about this ofrenda dedicated to Lopez, the impact of Lopez’s work on her own art, and the significance of the Dia de los Muertos holiday in her life.
Q: Tell us about the ofrenda.
Source : https://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/lifestyle/people/story/2021-10-23/la-mesa-artist-creates-dia-de-los-muertos-altar-to-honor-chicana-artist-yolanda-lopez-at-fall-festival318