Model for Fiesta”

Media - 1987.14.1 - SAAM-1987.14.1_1 - 10333
Copied Luis Jiménez, Model for "Fiesta", 1986, cast fiberglass, 19 3420 1413 in. (50.251.433.0 cm.), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Transfer from the General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service, 1987.14.1, © 1986, Luis Jiménez

Artwork Details

Model for Fiesta”
19 3420 1413 in. (50.251.433.0 cm.)
underside of base lower center in black felt-tipped magic marker: LUIS JIMENEZ/5-86 underside of base upper center in black felt-tipped magic marker: "FIESTA" MODEL 1/6 PAINTED UNIQUE incised in fiberglass between man's legs: L. JIMENEZ/85 /6 inscribed on fiberglass between man's legs in black ink: L.X. "86 incised in fiberglass near woman's left foot: /6 85/Jimenez underside of base left center in black felt-tipped magic marker: (two arrows side by side pointing left)
© 1986, Luis Jiménez
Credit Line
Transfer from the General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service
Mediums Description
cast fiberglass
  • Figure group
  • Mexican
  • Dress — accessory — hat
  • Recreation — dancing
  • Ceremony — dance
  • Ceremony — festival — fiesta
  • General Services Administration — Art-in-Architecture Program
Object Number

Artwork Description

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.