Cruz Ortiz's Painting of Chicano Scholar Tomás Ybarra-Frausto Acquired by Smithsonian


Tomás Ybarra-Frausto in an Aztlán dream, oil on canvas tarpaulin 2018, Cruz Ortiz - INSTAGRAM / CRUZORTIZART
  • Instagram / cruzortizart
  • Tomás Ybarra-Frausto in an Aztlán dream, oil on canvas tarpaulin 2018, Cruz Ortiz
The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery is continuing its San Antonio buying spree with an acquisition from Burnt Nopal's Cruz Ortiz.

The purchase follows close on the heels of the museum's recent acquisition of Al Rendon's photo of Chicano scholar Tomás Ybarra-Frausto. Ortiz's painting also features Ybarra-Frausto — whom the Smithsonian honored with the Joseph Henry Medal in 2007 — as its subject.

Ortiz told the San Antonio Business Journal his Ybarra-Frausto portrait has already made its way to Washington D.C. and that the Smithsonian has also expressed interest in two of his other paintings: portraits of Chicano voting rights activist Willie Velasquez and UTSA professor emerita Ellen Riojas-Clark.

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