Masa is S/Kin

mas is skin 1

Dimensions Date
Top Panel: 12” x 12” x 1”

Bottom Panel: 8” x 8” x 1”

Top Panel: Dry masa, drugstore makeup, beeswax, complexion mirror, and epoxy on wood panel (side note: the mirror is reflecting the image of the artist; this image is not painted on or otherwise placed there)

Bottom Panel: Masa migajon, drugstore makeup, and beeswax on wood panel

Materials list functions as primary description.


This work navigates the insecurities the artist feels regarding the complexion of his face. Associations with cracked earth, topography, and scarring in relation to the body, self-reflection, family, and culture are all apropos.


Migajon is a culturally significant craft and is often a resourceful skill utilized by matriarchs as a way to bridge the gap of family need with family income. It involves the creation of a clay body—usually a mixture of glue and day-old bread sourced from the rubbish of local bakeries. Once formed and dried, pieces (usually flowers) are often painted and assembled into domestic decorative pieces and sold at fairs of bazars; the money earned is often used to buy masa (cornmeal) for the family table. Here, the artist uses the tradition of migajon to create cracked slabs and replaces day-old bread with masa and cornstarch (using the material often seen as the end result or  goal of the process) to further navigate the cultural, celebratory, and spiritual associations masa holds in both ancient and contemporary Mexican households.


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