born 1941 Mexico City, Mexico died 1989 Los Angeles, California
At the age of one, Carlos Almaraz moved with his family from Mexico to the United States. He spent his early years in Chicago, was involved in the New York City art scene during the 1960s, and eventually settled in East Los Angeles. Almaraz completed his M.F.A. at the Otis/Parsons Art Institute in 1974. Committed to advancing the Chicano cause, during the 1970s he was involved with the farm workers’ movement, the L. A. mural movement, and El Teatro Campesino. He also was one of the founding members of the Chicano art collective, Los Four, along with Gilbert “Magu” Luján, Roberto de la Rocha, and Frank Romero.
Almaraz is best known for his depictions of Echo Park and his freeway car crashes where he captures the L. A. urban landscape with explosive painterly textures and brilliant color. The often dualistic aspect of life is a consistent element in the artist’s work; in Beach Trash Burning, the beauty of the Pacific Ocean coastline is combined with the horror and stench of burning refuse. Here the artist has transformed a seemingly mundane subject matter into a dynamic and engaging composition. Museum purchase made possible by The Judith Rothschild Foundation and the NHCC Foundation
Beach Trash Burning