Here Because of You-Joel Hernandez

La Luz de Jesus Gallery is pleased to present Here Because of You, a solo exhibition with artist Joel Hernandez.

Exhibition: September 9-October 1, 2023

Opening Reception Saturday, September 9, 4 pm-8 pm


When I arrived in the United States at a young age, I put aside being a child for a new reality. A reality of fitting in, learning a new way of communicating, blending in, and masking all of those feelings for the sake of my family’s success in America.  My mother used to say to me, “We are here because of you”.  Those words carried the weight of always doing my best for the sake of their sacrifices of leaving Mexico.

Those words and experiences have shaped my practice. Creating these masks and sculptures is a way of unburdening myself as if I’m taking it off my body to face it. A therapy on the process of letting go and trying to understand this moment in time through a tangible object.

My artwork addresses those feelings of everyday triumphs and struggles that connect us all. Whether it’s an expression of sadness or happiness, I want to give people the possibility to transport themselves into those feelings and embrace them. Historically, Masks have been used as ceremonial and ritualistic vessels that embody the human experience of their time. With my art, I want to create new vessels for expressing and examining our modern time. We all may have had different experiences growing up, but the common threads of joy and heartbreak are what connects us all around the ceremonial fire.

As you view the work. I’m taking you on a journey from my arrival to this country and the struggles of assimilation. To the trenches of self-discovery. Finding love, loss, heartbreak, and hope along the way.

Contact Gallery Director Matthew Gardocki for purchase info or to be placed on the preview list:  (323)666-7667