Courtesy: Los Angeles County Arts Commission Civic Art Collection
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Los Angeles, California

Roberto Delgado (

East Los Angeles Civic Center, Mednik Avenue and 3rd Street, Los Angeles, California, 90022
Date:  2007
Placement:  walkways
Artwork Type:  mosaics (visual works)
Material:  porcelain, ceramic glaze, limestone, mosaic glass
Description:  Roberto Delgado’s artwork for the East Los Angeles Civic Center encompasses two distinct parts - a series of ceramic tile and limestone pavers interspersed in the Center’s cement walkways and two ceramic tile murals attached to matching vertical columns at the Center’s Transit Plaza entrance facing 3rd Street. The 1’ square tile pavers combine photographic images (transferred to tiles using a silkscreen process) with Meso-American designs, colorful glass mosaic tiles, and drawn outlines of shapes and human figures. Delgado worked with the East Los Angeles community to find the historical and contemporary photographs. He juxtaposed the photos with other motifs and colors to create a thoughtful cultural and historical puzzle in each tile. There are 97 ceramic and 584 limestone pavers dotted throughout the Civic Center’s entrances and paths.

The two tile murals at the Transit Plaza entrance adorn a pair of facing columns. Each mural portrays a different a papalotl (“butterfly” in the Aztec Nahuatl language) which wraps around the columns. The bright colors of the designs were achieved by using stencils and airbrushing the glazes onto the tiles. Each mural contains 121 tiles and measures 74 square feet.

See Roberto Delgado, Woodcrest Library

About the Artist: Roberto Delgado is a Los Angeles native, born and raised in the Koreatown area. After serving three years in the US Army in Vicenza, Italy, he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome and completed his BA and MFA at UCLA. He has received several fellowships, including two Fulbrights to conduct research in Mexico and to teach mural painting in Honduras. His public art commissions have steadily increased in the past few decades. Among his public projects are works for the LAPD’s North Valley Police Station, the Atlanta International Airport, the Heritage Square Station on MTA’s Gold Line, the Pico-Aliso Housing Projects in Boyle Heights, and the Federal Courthouse in Pocatello, Idaho.

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