SFMOMA Sitting On Chrome Exhibition Celebrates Lowrider Culture

The Sitting on Chrome exhibition will run through February 19, 2024

The SFMOMA Sitting On Chrome exhibition is a new group exhibition that honors the legacy of lowrider car culture. The show features pieces by artists Mario Ayala, Guadalupe Rosales, and Rafa Esparza in the galleries on the second floor of the building. It will also feature a collaborative mural made especially for the show.

Since the second half of the 20th century, the lowrider has been a cultural icon, especially in Latino communities in California, Texas, and the Southwest. It was made popular in music videos and movies, from the South Gate, California-based Cypress Hill hip-hop group to the Boyz n the Hood film from 1991.

The opening wall of the Sitting On Chrome exhibition features artwork from all three artists, and includes an airbrushed mural by Ayala. The wall is framed by Lauren D’Amato, a local sign painter and artist, with faux silver leaf and lace stenciling. In a glimpse of what’s to come in the four galleries, the museum wall is used as a lowrider exterior, showcasing elements of Ayala, Esparza, and Rosales’ individual styles while framing them within a cohesive concept.

SFMOMA Sitting On Chrome
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art | YouTube

Rosales hopes that people will recognize “lowrider culture as this patriarchal super-hyper masculine environment that starts to feel like it excludes certain people,” as she works to challenge these expectations and help people from all backgrounds understand the artistic talent of the neighborhood.

The practice of keeping these galleries free will continue through the end of the year. The SFMOMA Sitting On Chrome exhibition greets guests as they ascend from the Botta atrium with an absolutely stunning exhibition of design and craftsmanship. The show opens today and will go on through February 19, 2024.

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