Star Montana: By the rivers, I stood and stared into the Sun

May 15–June 26, 2021
  • Shulamit Nazarian is pleased to present By the rivers, I stood and stared into the Sun, a solo exhibition by...

    Shulamit Nazarian is pleased to present By the rivers, I stood and stared into the Sun, a solo exhibition by Star Montana. Born and raised in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of East Los Angeles, Montana’s photographic practice reflects her family history, as well as the varied physical and cultural landscape of Boyle Heights and city of El Paso. Through newly authored images and the repurposing of her family’s archive of personal photos, Montana explores fragmented histories, reimagining lost time as part of the continuous cycle of life.

    The exhibition is comprised of authored images by Montana, appropriated and enlarged archival photographs, and a large scale photographic wall mural. Presented in a single line, these photographs drive a highly suggestive narrative, invoking a family history that feels familiar, yet incomplete. Like a lingering melody, the exhibited images rhythmically shift up and down at varying heights, conveying visual hymns of resilience and strength through portraits and landscapes.

  • Star Montana
    Louisa, Cathy, and Little Star, 2019
    Inkjet print on Sintra
    25.75 x 36 inches
    Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
  • The exhibition's title By the rivers, I stood and stared into the Sun is an adaptation of the biblical reference,...
    Star Montana
    Sunset (at the End of the Chihuahuan Desert), 2018
    Archival inkjet print
    30 x 42 inches
    Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs

    The exhibition's title By the rivers, I stood and stared into the Sun is an adaptation of the biblical reference, By the waters of Babylon, there we sat down and wept, when we remembered Zion. In Montana's version, she rises and defiantly stares into the sun, remembering generations past and the river of Latinx diaspora that endlessly forks and divides.

     

    The exhibition is comprised of authored images by Montana, appropriated and enlarged archival photographs, and a large scale photographic wall mural. Presented in a single line, these photographs drive a highly suggestive narrative, invoking a family history that feels familiar, yet incomplete. Like a lingering melody, the exhibited images rhythmically shift up and down at varying heights, conveying visual hymns of resilience and strength through portraits and landscapes.

    • Star Montana Louisa, Cathy, Angel, 2019 Inkjet print on Sintra 24 x 16 inches Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
      Star Montana
      Louisa, Cathy, Angel, 2019
      Inkjet print on Sintra
      24 x 16 inches
      Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
    • Star Montana Teenage Paula and Baby, 2019 Inkjet print on Sintra 30 x 24 inches Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
      Star Montana
      Teenage Paula and Baby, 2019
      Inkjet print on Sintra
      30 x 24 inches
      Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
    • Star Montana Paula's Desk, 2014 Archival inkjet print 40 x 32 inches Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
      Star Montana
      Paula's Desk, 2014
      Archival inkjet print
      40 x 32 inches
      Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
  • Reflecting on the importance of place through moments passed, the artist's images span generations and utilize photographs taken by her...
    Star Montana
    Paula in El Paso 1945, 2019
    Inkjet print on Sintra
    24 x 40 inches
    Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs

    Reflecting on the importance of place through moments passed, the artist's images span generations and utilize photographs taken by her grandmother and mother. Carefully arranging portraits and landscapes, Montana reflects on the narratives of her matriarchal family through non-chronological and non-linear presentations. This restructuring of various points in time allows for anachronistic relationships to emerge, addressing an introspective and ongoing story of loss, sorrow, and growth—all in light of a more hopeful future.

  • Star Montana is a photo-based artist who lives and works in Los Angeles. She holds a MFA in Art from...
    Star Montana
    Star, 2019
    Inkjet print on Sintra
    30 x 24 inches
    Edition of 5 plus 2 artist's proofs
    Star Montana is a photo-based artist who lives and works in Los Angeles. She holds a MFA in Art from the University of Southern California, a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Photography from the School of Visual Arts, New York and an Associate of Arts in Photography from East Los Angeles College. She was born and raised in the Boyle Heights neighborhood of East Los Angeles, which is predominantly Mexican American and serves as the backdrop to much of her work. Montana has had solo shows at The Main Museum (2017); and Vincent Price Art Museum (2016). Her work has recently been exhibited throughout Los Angeles at Night Gallery (2021); Charlie James Gallery (2019, 2016); Residency Art Gallery (2018); LA Plaza de Cultura y Artes Museum (2018); Occidental College (2017); The Mexican Center for Culture and Cinematic Arts at the Mexican Consulate General of Mexico (2017); and Ballroom Marfa, Texas (2017).

    Montana will be an artist-in-residence at Self-Help Graphics & Art, Los Angeles and the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, New York in 2021. Her work is in the collection of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, Fort Worth, TX and will be featured in group exhibitions at the Getty Center, Los Angeles and LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art) in 2021.