This project is a critical look at Chicano artist Vincent Valdez's 2002-2004 series Stations. The theoretical framework for this work is the concept of cultural citizenship, which refers to a variety of ways in which marginalized groups of people create, fight for, and retain space, identity, and rights within American society through acts of daily life. This research considers how the ten large-scale charcoal drawings that comprise Stations contribute to the construction and representation of distinct and unique Latino spaces and identities. Valdez establishes space in the sense of belonging and community engagement that his work allows. Within this context, thoughtful attention is paid to the cultural meaning of the artist's subject choices of boxing and religion. This research considers the significance of these subject choices and how the connections between the two create unique spaces of shared experience and consciousness for a viewer of the work. However, the parallels that Valdez draws between the Christ figure and his boxer also allow for a careful examination of the representations and contradictions of contemporary constructions of masculinity that are present in the series. Within this project, the work of Gloria Anzaldúa is critical in understanding and discussing the fluid nature of Chicano identity. This study also considers how in the tradition of Chicana writers, Valdez expresses and affirms identity through autobiographical methods. Further, the artist's use of charcoal to create these large scale drawings is considered for its narrative qualities. This study concludes that Valdez's series Stations is an act of cultural citizenship.
- Drawing citizenship through Vincent Valdez's Stations: construction and representation