Oral history interview with Franco Mondini-Ruiz

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.mondin04
Creators:
Mondini-Ruiz, Franco, 1961-
Cordova, Cary
Recuerdos Orales: Interviews of the Latino Art Community in Texas
Dates:
2004 July 7-8
Languages:
English
.
Physical Description:
93 Pages
Transcript
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
An interview of Franco Mondini-Ruiz conducted 2004 July 7-8, by Cary Cordova, for the Archives of American Art, in Alameda and San Antonio, Tex.
Scope and Contents
Mondini speaks of his parents' disparate backgrounds; his repressed childhood in Boerne, Tex.; his family's electronics store; discovering that his brother was actually his half-brother; attending undergrad and law school at St. Mary's in San Antonio, Tex.; his Catholic rearing; raising his Latino consciousness during and after law school; his life as a successful lawyer; his ingratiation into both rich white and Latino cultures; his partying and coming-out as a gay man; his making of art as a counterpoint to his office work; advice for young Latino artists; the importance of cheap art; exoticizing of Mexican culture by Anglos; quitting law and his experience living in Mexico City; and being diagnosed with HIV. Mondini-Ruiz also speaks of opening his Infinito Botanica and how he operated it; American drug culture; San Antonio's cityscape and his "utopic" hope for it; his "Blue Star on Houston" exhibition; drug use; his show at Bard College as his big break; living with Alejandro Diaz; homosexual and Mexican rococo aesthetics; his exhibit at the 2000 Whitney Biennial and moving to New York City; the importance of found art; the universality of class and race struggles; the problems with over-materialization of artwork; his "Ballroom" show in Marfa, Tex. and the issues confronting that city's arts patronage; his making of the "Spurs Installation"; his new anti-materialistic mindset; and the patterns within his career. Mondini-Ruiz also recalls Michael Tracy, Ito Romo, Rolando Briseno, Sandra Cisneros, Jesse Amado, Donald Judd, Frederieke Taylor, Julia Herzberg, Danny Lozano, Maaretta Jaukkuri, Tracey Moffat, Mike Casey, and others.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Franco Mondini-Ruiz (1961- ) is an artist in New York. Legal name is Gino Francisco Mondini. Interviewer Cary Cordova (1970-) is an art historian from Austin, Tex.

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.

General
General
Originally recorded on 5 sound discs. Reformatted in 2010 as 9 digital wav files. Duration is 5 hrs., 12 min.

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
Gay artists -- Texas -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art -- Technique Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lawyers -- Texas -- Interviews Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Hispanic American artists -- Texas -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sound recordings Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Interviews Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Briseño, Rolando, 1952- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Amado, Jesse, 1951- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Romo, Ito, 1961- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Herzberg, Julia P. Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Jaukkuri, Maaretta Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Moffatt, Tracey Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Tracy, Michael, 1943- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Judd, Donald, 1928-1994 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Cisneros, Sandra Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Diaz, Alejandro Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Taylor, Frederieke Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lozano, Danny Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Casey, Mike Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Recuerdos Orales: Interviews of the Latino Art Community in Texas Corporate 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/