Oral history interview with Elsa Flores

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.flores97
Creators:
Flores, Elsa
Rangel, Jeffrey J.
Dates:
1997 Feb. 18-Apr. 30
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
11 Sound cassettes
Sound recording (60 mins. each)
analog
209 Pages
Transcript
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of Elsa Flores conducted 1997 Feb. 18-Apr. 30, by Jeffrey Rangel, for the Archives of American Art.
Scope and Contents
The interviews took place in Flores' studio, in South Pasadena, Calif., over four sessions. Flores discusses her parents' diverse backgrounds and her difficult childhood and adolescence; the development of her political consciousness; her involvement with Chicanismo; her interests in art, photography, and music, including being a member of California State University, Los Angeles mariachi band; her art, which she considers more biographical and mystical than ethnic; her use, initially, of a dark palette to distinguish her work from that of her husband, Carlos Almaraz, and changing to a brighter, more optimistic palette after Almaraz's was diagnosed with AIDS. She recalls Almaraz's energy and genius; his struggles with AIDS and his search for alternative healing methods; finding solace in Kauai; and his request to have his ashes strewn around Kauai at his favorite places. Flores comments on the difficult period after Almaraz's death; her devotion to their daughter; keeping Almaraz's work at the forefront of public awareness; and her own art career.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Elsa Flores (1955-) is a painter from California. Married to painter Carlos Almaraz.

Administration
Immediate Source of Acquisition
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics, and administrators. Funding for this interview provided by the Smithsonian Institution Latino Pool Fund.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Painters -- California -- Los Angeles -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Women painters -- California -- Los Angeles Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Mexican American artists -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Hispanic American women artists Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Almaraz, Carlos Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives of American Art
750 9th Street, NW
Victor Building, Suite 2200
Washington, D.C. 20001
https://www.aaa.si.edu/services/questions
https://www.aaa.si.edu/