Guillermo Gómez-Peña, San Francisco
Eureka Fellowship Awardee 2016
Guillermo Gómez-Peña is an artist who explores cross-cultural issues, immigration, the politics of language, the human body, and new technologies. He has a Latino/border perspective, and believes that the role of the artist is to actively engage citizens in the improvement of consciousness and the betterment of relations between communities of difference. His work mixes experimental aesthetics, activist politics, imagination, social reality, Spanglish, and Chicano humor. He creates live performances, video art pieces, “photo-performances,” and has published ten books. Gómez-Peña collaborates with photographers, videographers, choreographers, and musicians, using audience interaction as an artistic strategy to illustrate multiple perspectives across national borders, race, gender, and generations. His projects involve acts of citizen diplomacy and strategies to create communities of “rebel artists” devoted to erasing the borders between art and politics, practice and theory, and artist and spectator. Born in Mexico City, he moved to the U.S. in 1978. His work has been presented at over 800 venues in the U.S., Canada, Latin America, Europe, Russia, South Africa, and Australia. His awards include a MacArthur Fellowship, Bessie Award, and an American Book Award. He is a regular contributor for newspapers and magazines in the U.S., Mexico, and Europe, and a contributing editor to The Drama Review of NYU-MIT. Gómez-Peña is a Senior Fellow in the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics and a Patron for the London-based Live Art Development Agency.