January 27, 2006

Bajito y Suavecito…….Lowriders of Southern California

The San Diego Automotive Museum presents “Bajito y Suavecito…..Lowriders of Southern California” from January 27th through March 27th 2005 in Balboa Park.

“Bajito y Suavecito” literally translates to “low and slow,” a term often used to describe these remarkable cars that were born out of oppression and misunderstanding. In post-war Los Angeles, young Chicanos resisting intimidation took a symbol of white middle-class culture and turned it into a symbol of their own. This was the birth of the jaunty, colorful, road-hugging counterpart of the zoot suit. This was the birth of the auto phenomenon known as the lowrider.

These cars have evolved a great deal since then, and their appeal is international. They tell a story of personal and cultural history, frequently incorporating Catholic imagery as well as icons from Aztec mythology. Since many are now exclusively show cars and are no longer driven, the San Diego Automotive Museum is offering a unique opportunity to experience a unique exhibition that incorporates the cars, the culture, and the art – a first for anywhere in Southern California.

The San Diego Automotive Museum is proud to be working with some of the finest auto artisans in the lowrider community on both sides of the border. In addition to the amazing cars, this exhibit features the work of Chicano artists David Avalos (sculpture), Eddie Galindo (ink on paper), Ricardo Islas (photography), Gilbert “Magu” Lujan (sculpture and printmaking), Victor Ochoa (painting), Alberto Varela (photography) and Werc one (painting and sculpture).

Artifacts from the lowrider clubs in San Diego will also be on display. Rigo Reyes, founder of the San Diego Amigos Car Club, is a well-known and respected historian and culturist. His 1929 Willy’s will be featured in the show. One of the most famous low-riders in the United States will also be on display. The Gypsy Rose, a 1964 Chevy Impala, was featured on the television show Chico and the Man.

Bajito y Suavecito will also include guest speakers as part of the museum’s Third Thursday series. Dr. Denise Sandoval, a renowned authority on Chicano culture and lowriders, will speak on Thursday, February 16th at 7:00 p.m. Rigo Reyes and Victor Ochoa will speak on Thursday, March 16th at 7:00 p.m.

The San Diego Automotive Museum is open 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. daily (the last admission is 4:30 p.m.). The museum is closed Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Day. Admission is $7 for adults, $6 for seniors (65 and over), $6 active duty military with ID, $3 children ages 6 – 15. Children under the age of 5 are admitted free of charge. The museum is located at 2080 Pan American Plaza, Balboa Park.

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