Art & Architecture

¡Printing the Revolution!: The Rise and Impact of Chicano Graphics, 1965 to Now

    Edited by
  • E. Carmen Ramos

A groundbreaking look at how Chicano graphic artists and their collaborators have used their work to imagine and sustain identities and political viewpoints during the past half century


Dec 1, 2020
9 x 12 in.
297 color + 7 b/w illus.
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The 1960s witnessed the rise of the Chicano civil rights movement, or El Movimiento, and marked a new way of being a person of Mexican descent in the United States. To call oneself Chicano—a formerly derogatory term—became a political and cultural statement, and Chicano graphic artists asserted this identity through their printmaking and activism. ¡Printing the Revolution! explores the remarkable legacy of Chicano graphic arts relative to major social movements, the way these artists and their cross-cultural collaborators advanced printmaking methods, and the medium’s unique role in shaping critical debates about U.S. identity and history.

From satire and portraiture to politicized pop, this volume examines how artists created visually captivating graphics that catalyzed audiences. Posters and prints announced labor strikes and cultural events, highlighted the plight of political prisoners, schooled viewers in Third World liberation movements, and, most significantly, challenged the invisibility of Mexican Americans in U.S. society. While screen printing was the dominant mode of printmaking during the civil rights era, this book considers how artists have embraced a wide range of techniques and strategies, from installation art to shareable digital graphics. This book shows how artists have used and continue to use graphic arts as a means to engage the public, address social justice concerns, and wrestle with shifting notions of the term Chicano.

Lavishly illustrated and featuring three double gatefolds, ¡Printing the Revolution! presents a vibrant look at the past, present, and future of an essential aspect of Chicano art.

Exhibition Schedule
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC
May 14–August 8, 2021

Published in association with the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, DC

Awards and Recognition

  • Shortlisted for the Alice Award, Furthermore Grants in Publishing
  • Finalist for the PROSE Award in Art Exhibitions, Association of American Publishers
  • Finalist for the Alfred H. Barr Jr. Award, College Art Association
  • Winner of the ALAA Thoma-Foundation Exhibition Catalogue Award, Association for Latin American Art