In her piece, “Amor Alien,” Molina’s art draws on the relationship she has had with respondents to her previous artwork. The tensions between her work and some of her viewers come forward in this piece. Molina takes the painter Jesus Helguera’s “Amor Indio” (1946) as inspiration for her “Amor Alien.” In this rendition, she delves deeper into the relationship that the viewers (do not) allow her to have with the image of Dave. In the following response, the viewer is made privy to her body, sardonic humor, and the sarcasm in which she approaches those viewers who continually misinterpret her work and intentions:
I portrayed myself as a green-skinned, indigenous resident of the fictional red planet Dave is visiting. The joke is that he’s the alien. But as we all know from being educated in the USA, nothing exists until a White man sees it (Columbus “discovered” America) and Dave doesn’t really think of me as human, if he ever thinks of me at all, (doubtful) so this is entirely appropriate. I’m also “The Other” that you fear or maybe, identify with. At a certain point, I realized that any generic, clean-cut White male could stand in and it would still work, but I couldn’t stop myself.
Excerpt from Ramirez-Dhoore, Dora. 2005. “The Cyberborderlands: Surfing the Web for Xicanidad.”
Journal of Mujeres Activas en Letras y Cambio Social 5(1): 10-47.
Laura Molina was born in East Los Angeles in 1957 and grew up in the suburbs near Pasadena. Primarily a painter, she also works in animation and digital media. She studies art and filmmaking at the California Institute of the Arts. She lives in Northern Los Angeles County on the edge of the Mojave Desert, from which she maintains an intensely personal website, the self-proclaimed “Angriest Women in the World.” Her art is also displayed at www.lauramolina.com