L.A. History: A Mexican Perspective

Barbara Carrasco’s Landmark Mural L.a. History: A Mexican Perspective

Union Station Ticketing Hall

September 29 – October 22, 2017 from 9:00 am – 7:00 pm

Barbara Carrasco’s landmark mural, L.A. History: A Mexican Perspective will be on display in Union Station Historic Ticketing Hall from September 29 through October 22. The extraordinary 80-foot mural is part of LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes and California Historical Society’s exhibition, ¡Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicana/o Murals Under Siege, part of the Getty’s Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative.

In 1981, Carrasco created the mural for the Los Angeles Bicentennial, selecting its scenes after interviewing historians and community groups about important aspects of the city’s history. Students, fellow artists, and even family members modeled for and helped construct and paint the mural.

Carrasco’s L.A. History: A Mexican Perspective was commissioned by the Los Angeles Community Redevelopment Agency and was originally intended to be displayed at a site on Broadway in downtown Los Angeles as part of the city’s bicentennial celebration. However, it was censored by the same agency for depicting a more realistic history of people of color in Los Angeles. The mural has only been shown once in its entirety, for two weeks in 1990 at Union Station as part of the Los Angeles Festival.

The mural contains 51 scenes depicting a chronological history of Los Angeles with an emphasis on the experiences of marginalized groups. These vignettes begin with the city’s original native inhabitants and conclude with key episodes from the twentieth century. Individual scenes include the whitewashing of David Alfaro Siqueiros’s mural América Tropical, the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, and the Zoot Suit Riots, all shown as unfolding within the strands of a woman’s hair.

The California Historical Society and LA Plaza, the curators of ¡Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicana/o Murals under Siege, spearheaded the effort to bring the mural to Union Station.

*The Mural will be on display from 9:00 am – 7:00 pm except for the following dates:

  • 10/6 – Closed 1:30 p.m. –7:00 p.m. for previously scheduled private event
  • 10/7 – Closed for previously scheduled private event
  • 10/13 – Closed for previously scheduled Union Station Commercial Developer Industry Forum
  • 10/14 – Closed for previously scheduled private event
  • 10/15 – Closed for previously scheduled private event
  • 10/19 – Closed 12:00 p.m. –7:00 p.m. for previously scheduled event (room will be publicly accessible for a jazz performance 8-10pm)
  • 10/20 – Closed for previously scheduled private event
  • 10/21 – Closed for previously scheduled private event

¡Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicano/a Murals under Siege, an exhibition and companion publication presented by LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes (LA Plaza) and the California Historical Society (CHS), examines the history of contested Chicana and Chicano murals through eight examples that have been censored, whitewashed, neglected and even destroyed. The exhibition is on view at LA Plaza from September 23, 2017 through February 28, 2018.

Go Metro to all events by taking the Red, Purple, Gold, or Silver Line directly to Union Station LA.