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Model for "Fiesta"

1986 Luis Jiménez Born: El Paso, Texas 1940 Died: Hondo, New Mexico 2006 cast fiberglass 19 3/4 x 20 1/4 x 13 in. (50.2 x 51.4 x 33.0 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Transfer from the General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service © 1986, LUIS JIMENEZ 1987.14.1 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 50B

Luce Center Quote

"It's an out-and-out Mexican hat dance. It's not cute. It's not a Disneyland version." Luis Jiménez, Los Angeles Times, August 3, 1991

Luce Center Label

The General Services Administration commissioned Luis Jiménez to make Fiesta—Jarabe for the Otay Mesa border station near San Diego, California. The Mexican couple is dancing a traditional Mexican hat dance, called jarabe. The piece is typical of Jiménez's focus on the Hispanic working class. After the sculpture's installation, some viewers criticized the work for its lack of "respect for Mexican culture" (ARTnews, March 1992). They complained that the woman's dress was Spanish, not Mexican, and too tight, while the man's skin was too dark and he had rolls of fat hanging over his pants. Jiménez defended his piece, explaining that he was presenting "real people in a real situation." This piece is a model for the completed sculpture, which was installed in 1991 and stands about nine feet tall.


Ceremony - dance

Ceremony - festival - fiesta

Dress - accessory - hat

Ethnic - Mexican

Figure group

Recreation - dancing

General Services Administration - Art-in-Architecture Program


glass - fiberglass