For our 2021 Curatorial Residency in partnership with @musa.museodelasartes, the Museum of the Arts in Guadalajara, Mexico (MUSA), BBAX is hosting Laura Ayala who, for many years, served as Curator, Educator, and Coordinator of Exhibitions at MUSA. For this residency, Ayala will undertake research, education, and community projects, focusing on Mexican Muralism and their connection with California and Santa Monica's Spanish speaking community. Through this program we hope to engage, inspire, and highlight the contributions made by the Latino community to our city.


Throughout the residency Laura will research the local Chicano and Spanish speaking communities, while also engaging with the LatinX community as well as local Spanish speaking artists through virtual studio visits, portfolios reviews, lectures, and workshops discussing José Clemente Orozco muralism history and restoration.


From 2014 to date Laura Ayala has studied the life and work of Orozco, she worked in the Museum of the Arts of the University of Guadalajara for more than 15 years where she developed a series of curatorial and educational projects around the murals that Orozco painted from 1936 to 1937 in the auditorium known as Paraninfo, located inside the building that is currently the headquarters of the Museum.


In May 2016 an earthquake caused some cracks to these frescoes, it was crucial to make a comprehensive intervention. The scaffolding - on which the restorers worked - gave Laura the opportunity to observe the paintings at a close distance, allowing her to appreciate the brushstroke of the master and above all to perceive the monumentality of the works and the great difficulty that represented their execution. With this experience she conceived a project that would allow her “to transport” the frescoes, this work was entitled Metaphysical Orozco which is an animated video experience.


This project was first presented at the LA ART Show in 2018 and later at the MUSA headquarters itself. Laura considers it of great importance to know the background and historical context in which a particular work is produced. Mexican Muralism was possible in Mexico thanks to the combination of many social, political and artistic factors.


It is very important that both the well-informed and the new public can have access to new elements of interpretation of the work of the Grand Masters, in this case Orozco. This research intends to sow a seed in postmodern times, giving us new elements of interpretation that lead to a critical rereading of the work of José Clemente Orozco, creating cultural understanding and awareness of the social issues Mexican artists like Orozco face.


This program is possible with support from the city of Santa Monica's Community Access & Participation (CAP) program. For more information on our Curatorial Residency Program, please click here.




Each month a curatorial theme featuring a selection of artwork from Bergamot Station galleries will be presented. Building Bridges Art Exchange is excited to lead the collaborative exhibit Oneness = Togetherness, curated by Laura Ayala.


With this exhibition Laura seeks to activate a reflection in the way we relate to our natural and social environment. How do we live together? How do we negotiate our environmental, social and political relationships? How can we (re) build healthy connections with ourselves and others? How can we establish rites of healing, understanding, and respect? In this sense, artists and their works that explore concern for the environment could be integrated; as well as those who care about migration; the rituals of reconnection with the earth or want to celebrate ethnic, social and cultural differences. To view the exhibit, please click here.