Model for "Fiesta"

  • Luis Jiménez, Model for "Fiesta", 1986, cast fiberglass, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Transfer from the General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service, 1987.14.1, © 1986, Luis Jiménez

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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.

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"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

Model for "Fiesta"
19 3/4 x 20 1/4 x 13 in. (50.2 x 51.4 x 33.0 cm.)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Transfer from the General Services Administration, Public Buildings Service

Mediums Description
cast fiberglass
  • Ceremony – festival – fiesta
  • Ceremony – dance
  • Dress – accessory – hat
  • Ethnic – Mexican
  • General Services Administration – Art-in-Architecture Program
  • Recreation – dancing
  • Figure group
Object Number
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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