Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Kinky Guacamole? Afro-Mexicans in Black & White

I just came across this fascinating October 8th LA Times article about a photographer named Tony Gleaton.

The article, written by Sean Mitchell, begins:

Race is not an issue for Tony Gleaton, the photographer told students at Loyola Marymount University recently. Yet an irresistible musing on the meaning of race has been his destiny. Born with blue eyes and a fair complexion, Gleaton, 59, has spent his life explaining to people that both of his parents were black and that he is "not biracial," while wondering why anyone should care. It's not surprising, perhaps, that Gleaton has made his reputation with a series of portraits of black Mexicans, descendants of slaves brought to Mexico by the Spanish conquistadors 500 years ago, "before the first black slaves came to Colonial Williamsburg," he pointed out.

Gleaton's photographs of Black Mexicans are amazing and are on display at the Burns Fine Arts Center at California's Loyola Marymount University through Nov. 18.

If you're like me and want to find out more about the history of Black Mexicans and you can't make the exhibit, check out this informative Smithsonian link on Gleaton and the history of Africans in Mexico.

So cool.

And just because I don't want to leave you clamoring for more information with nowhere to turn, try this link for further information about the Afro-Mexican experience and even more photographs.

Peace.

4 comments:

Tami said...

Lori,

I love your Web site. I found it through your comment to my post "Not black enough" on Anti-Racist Parent. I knew from your response, we must have a few things in common...sure enough, it seems some of the same blogging topics catch our attention. Anyway, cool to see that you have contributed to Naked and Hair Story, two of my favorite books. I'm off to flip through them and find your stories. I'm also adding My American Meltingpot to my list of blog faves.

Me said...

Tami,

Thanks for the love. And I do believe we are kindered spirits!

Liz said...

That's really neat that that's what he covers. I've had a quite few folks talk about how they have pure Spanish ancestry, not even native Indian, yet they're really really dark. Such a denial of the Black Mexican existence.

R. said...

I learned of "Black Mexicans" several years ago through a random link that someone posted on a website. It was quite informative; I wish I would have saved the website.