Mundos Alternos: Art and Science Fiction in the Americas at Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art
Alien Skins

Mundos Alternos: Art and Science Fiction in the Americas brings together contemporary artists from across the Americas who have tapped into science fiction’s capacity to imagine new realities, both utopian and dystopian. Science fiction offers a unique artistic landscape in which to explore the colonial enterprise that shaped the Americas and to present alternative perspectives speculating on the past and the future. In the works featured in the exhibition, most created in the last two decades, artists employ the imagery of science fiction to suggest diverse modes of existence and represent “alienating” ways of being in the world. The exhibition offers a groundbreaking account of the intersections among science fiction, techno-culture, and the visual arts.

On view at Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art is Alien Skins, one of several thematic “constellations” in the exhibition. In Alien Skins, costumes from performances and everyday life reorient Latinx existence across global and planetary borders. By donning a garment or other physical apparatus, the artists unfasten identity from earthly boundaries and stratifying social constructions. Alien Skins features work by AZTLAN Dance Company, Claudio Dicochea, Hector Hernandez, LA VATOCOSMICO c-s, Robert “Cyclona” Legorreta, Mundo Meza, Carmelita Tropicana, Luis Valderas, and Ricardo Valverde.

The exhibition and public programming series at Queens Museum is expanded through satellite installations and programs at partner institutions throughout New York City, including The Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art; the Museum of the Moving Image, which will present lectures and film screening series organized by Mexico City-based scholar, Itala Schmelz; and Sugar Hill Children’s Museum of Art & Storytelling, Harlem, where a series of special programming for family audiences will be organized.

Mundos Alternos is organized by UCR ARTS at the University of California, Riverside, and curated by Robb Hernández, Assistant Professor of English at UCR; Tyler Stallings, Director of the Frank M. Doyle Arts Pavilion at Orange Coast College, and former Artistic Director of the Barbara and Art Culver Center of the Arts at UCR ARTS; and Joanna Szupinska-Myers, Senior Curator at the California Museum of Photography at UCR ARTS. The traveling iteration is organized by Hitomi Iwasaki, Director of Exhibitions and Curator at the Queens Museum and Joanna Szupinska-Myers.

Image: Hector Hernandez, Bulca, 2015, color photograph, 20 x 30 inches. Courtesy of the artist and UCR ARTS.

Mundos Alternos: Art and Science Fiction in the Americas is made possible by lead support from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional support is provided by Fundación Jumex and Galeria Luisa Strina. Major funding for the Queens Museum is generously provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, the Lambent Foundation, the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc., the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund, and the Shelley and Donald Rubin Foundation.