Soldadera: Creative Research in the Archives of the Mexican Revolution
January 12, 2021

On Jan. 21, UC Riverside professor Jennifer Doyle and internationally recognized artist Nao Bustamante will discuss the genesis of Bustamante’s multi-media exhibition, Soldadera.

This virtual presentation will be the fourth installment of the UCR Library’s series, Faculty Profiles in Research, Art and Innovation. Dr. Romina Robles Ruvalcaba, assistant professor of history at UC Merced, will serve as moderator.

Soldadera (Spanish for “female soldiers”) returns to southern California on Jan. 21, and will remain open through Mar. 28, 2021 at the S/A Exhibitions gallery in Santa Ana. The exhibition highlights a variety of Bustamante’s artwork inspired by the women who fought in the Mexican Revolution, including artistic transformations of several digitized photographs from UCR Library’s Special Collections. Since its debut in 2015 at the Vincent Price Art Museum in East Los Angeles, it has traveled to New York, Mexico City, San Diego, San Francisco, and Marfa.

In 2014, Bustamante turned to UCR's extensive collection of photography and other materials covering the Mexican Revolution, focused particularly on women's role in this segment of Mexican history. Doyle curated this exhibition and supported it by editing a series of essays published on KCET's website, exploring the artist's process and the historical context for this project, born from a 2015 meeting between Bustamante and Leandra Becerra Lumbreras in Guadalajara. During the Mexican Revolution, Lumbreras served as an Adelita, providing quartermaster support for revolutionary fighters. When they first met in 2015, Lumbreras was the oldest living person at age 127.

The exhibition opening at the S/A Exhibitions gallery is scheduled for 4:00 - 10:00 p.m. on the same date as the virtual presentation, Jan. 21. Due to COVID-related restrictions, the opening reception will be limited to eight guests at a time. Those interested in scheduling a viewing time must email the gallery in advance.