Recuerdos de Ayer, Suenos de Manana

(Remembrances of Yesterday, Dreams of Tomorrow)

Background Information

1982, Judithe Hernandez. 37'H x 28'W
The only work of public art sponsored by the Los Angeles Bicentennial Committee is painted on the rear of the Brunswig Garage. Funded with a $15,000 grant from the Crocker National Bank Foundation, the mural portrays La Reina de Los Angeles, the patroness of the city, moving through time while images from the past and present spread out from her all encompassing veil.

The area's ubiquitous palm trees, depicted in a style reminiscent of travel posters and postcards from the 1930's, stand in silhouette against a California sunset. An athlete, representing both the 1932 and 1984 Olympics, appears to the left of the Plaza Church. The tower of Angel's Flight located over the athlete and the Spring Street trolley behind the palm trees in the lower right, recall the city's once vital public transportation system.

Judithe Hernandez included Mexican campesinos to "represent the foundation for the state's former agricultural wealth." Believing their "exploitation as a source of cheap labor stands in sharp contrast to the city's conspicuous prosperity," she painted them in soft earth tones and framed them between clearly outlined palms and a stark white band representing a modern freeway. The freeway, which connects with the ribbons weaving through the virgin's hands, merges with City Hall to form an ensemble of universally recognized symbols of Los Angeles. To the left of City Hall, the Griffith Park Observatory can be seen within the yellow background.

Even though the Brunswig Garage was slated for demolition (now scheduled in 1999), Hernandez selected the building because its location in El Pueblo Historic Park complements the mural's commemoration of the city's history. Painted between October, 1981 and January, 1982, the mural was dedicated by Hernandez on February 10, 1982, to her friend Richard Hinojoso, who died in 1981 at age 33 of cancer.

Text provided courtesy of Michael Several, Los Angeles, April 1999.

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