You Are Here

You Are Here - Body

“Borderlands”

The newly installed “Borderlands” exhibition in the American art galleries features works by Sandy Rodriguez, the
2020–21 Caltech-Huntington Art + Research Fellow. One of Rodriguezʼs works is a map of the greater Los Angeles area, titled YOU ARE HERE / Tovaangar / El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los Ángeles de Porciúncula / Los Angeles. This multilingual map was created on amate paper (a native fig-bark paper) with 23-karat gold and pigments from the local area. To create this map and tell the story of this land, Rodriguez worked with a variety of individuals, including scholars, historians, and the late Tongva elder Julia Bogany. The map features local cities (Yaanga DTLA and Yoat Mount Baldy), animals (birds and fish), and plants (oak tree and cacti). Sprawling across the top of the map is a rainbow, symbolizing the past, present, and future of the land. Learn more about this work of art and “Borderlands.”

Now itʼs time to make your own story map.

Materials

  • Paper
  • Art-making materials (markers, colored pencils, paint, watercolor, etc.)

Steps

  1. The title of Sandy Rodriguezʼs map starts with the phrase “you are here.” Where are you in your life? Think about your past, present, and future self. What would be important to document about your life?What is important to your story?
  2. Using your art-making materials, design a map that reflects where you are. You can include and label places, objects, flora, and fauna that help tell your story.

Questions

  1. How did you decide what to include in your map? Were there things you thought about featuring but decided to not include? How did you make your decisions?
  2. Did your choice of art-making materials affect the way you designed your map? If so, how?
  3. Does your map tell one story about your life or multiple little stories that weave together?

Share your art! #LearnAtTheH