Daniela Garcia Hamilton

Region: Pacific Coast

City / State: Oxnard, CA

I create paintings that are influenced by my cultural upbringing as a first-generation Mexican American. I reflect on the cultural rituals I was raised with. Being the first to leave my community to pursue a college degree, I returned with questions as to why we performed the rituals without change. Rituals, such as birthday celebrations that included pushing the birthday boy headfirst into the cake, reminded me of the emotion I felt as a child. A rush of fear and uncertainty in conjunction with immense joy and an overflowing feel of community. I attempt to create an environment for the viewer to feel connected to these moments. The figures are placed in fabricated scenes that draw connections to colorful homes of Guanajuato, Mexico. Having spent most of my life traveling to my father’s hometown of Las Cañas in Guanajuato, my perception of our cultural roots were shaped by the time spent here. I use patterning throughout my work as a physical representation of family and how we are woven together through our shared experience.