WHAT TRIBE YOU FROM? | John YoYOGI FORTES

digital show | may 29 - june 26, 2020

"Identity is something that often surfaces in my paintings. By using 'tribe' as a jumping off point, I have an opportunity to reexamine how I define myself and others; and who or what I align with as I navigate my physical, psychological and digital landscapes. As an artist, I feel it’s a window to reconciliation with my own history, my influences, and defusing a self-critique weighted in art history. In this body of work I wanted to go wherever my intuition led me making no apologies for style, perceived discontinuity, content or technique. I wanted to play and reconnect with the joy of making artwork."

 - John Yoyogi Fortes




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HOW THE WEST WAS JUAN

 installation 1

installation 2 




press release

galleryFRITZ Announces New Show 

With A Quintessential New Mexican Twist


[Santa Fe, NM] Prominent Santa Fe-based art space galleryFRITZ is excited to announce John Yoyogi Fortes’ solo show WHAT TRIBE YOU FROM? opening tomorrow, May 29, 2020. Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, galleryFRITZ will remain closed to the public and the show will be available online, followed by weekly galleryFRITZ | stories featuring Fortes discussing his current body of work. WHAT TRIBE YOU FROM? will be digitally available through June 31, 2020 at www.galleryFRITZ.com

Fortes lives and works in Sacramento; however this show is uniquely New Mexican. “In 2018, while in Santa Fe, my family and I visited the Taos Pueblo. While we were there, I struck up a conversation with a Pueblo artist who asked me, ‘What tribe you from?’ I told him I was from the Filipino tribe, and we both laughed,” recounts Fortes. “The irony is that this wasn’t the first time that I’d heard this question assuming my ethnicity. I’ve never taken offense to being asked about my race and the reality is these encounters have resulted in great conversations on a more personal level. In this context I’d like to think there was no pretense, just inclusion; attempting to form a closer connection through something familiar. On the other hand, I feel it’s also a question loaded with classification, assumptions, profiling and colonialism.” 

Fortes employs mixed media including (but limited to) acrylic, glitter, enamel spray paint and photo transfers to create large paintings blending pastel palettes, unexpected patterns and poignant cultural commentary. “John has a unique ability to create interesting and relevant paintings with an inclusive intention,” says owner Deborah Fritz. “I love how he incorporates everyday objects to express a multitude of emotions.”

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