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While Scott provides important insights into the cultural logic of MTR, she does not fully consider how the coal industry has deliberately and explicitly striven to maintain its central place in the region. This minor criticism notwithstanding, this is an important contribution to several bodies of literature.
John P. By Ben Chappell. University of Texas Press.
20 Ride with Pride
Lowrider Space is a pleasurable book to read, which will have both popular and scholarly appeal. One of the most intriguing aspects of the book is the meticulous documentation of how lowriders are created.
As the book explains, the suspension systems of these vehicles are modiied, sometimes with hydraulics, so that the body of the vehicle is closer to the ground. The cars thus do not conform to conventional, factory-set aesthetics. In addition to modiications of height, such vehicles are often painted in bright colors or adorned with imagery, outitted with custom steering wheels, re- upholstered with velvet or other luxurious fabric, and upgraded by adding new tire rims.
The book is signiicant as an ethnography of a US subculture, done by an Ameri- can anthropologist. Theory is used in this book, but it is never heavy handed. It also attempts to analyze lowriding using the terminology of the people who participate in the subculture; signiicant portions of the book are quotes from people in the ield. He also includes numerous photographs of these elaborately customized cars, some in black and white and others in color.
He includes reproduc- tions from Lowrider Magazine, photographs of model cars, and other examples of lowrider ephemera. He even includes maps of the city of Austin, as experienced by people in lowriders.
This provides general insight into the aesthetics of these vehicles. People experience these cars via the spatial constraints of their bodies, as constructed spatial environ- ments, as vehicles that cruise the space of streets.
Chappell, indeed, dedicates a chapter to each of these types of space. The book is thus an example of a good, systematic analysis of spatial phenomena. Marks and Gradante are articles based on early field studies that are contemporary with the research summarized in Mendoza Gradante, William.
Marks, Susan Tosaw. Mendoza, Ruben. Edited by Francisco A.
Anglistische Forschungen Heidelberg, Germany: C. Winter, This chapter in an English-language, German-published edited volume summarizes several papers that Mendoza researched and published as a student. Includes a taxonomy of the material forms of lowriding, along with analysis of lowrider display in terms of sexual courtship and masculine competition.
Stone, Michael C.
Approaches lowriding as a popular expressive form. Vigil, James Diego.
Interprets lowrider style as rooted in gendered Mexican forms of cultural practice. Describes distinctions and tensions between car clubbers and cholos as partially class-based, though they share some aesthetic priorities. Even before these mass mediations, the automotive press took an interest in lowriders, beginning with West , which treated lowriding as cultural resistance in Car and Driver.
Chavoya cited under Artists and Art Books describes an angry and explicitly white- supremacist letter to the editor in response. Despite a relatively exotic representation, the piece ties lowriding to other car-cultural practices popular among Anglo youth, questioning the paseo thesis specifically see General Representations. King, Wayne. Sterngold, James.
A feature article that introduces lowriding on the occasion of the Arte y Estilo exhibition in Los Angeles see Sandoval and Polk , cited under Lowriders in Museums. Major themes in the representation of lowriders appear, including appropriation of American car culture, art in spite of material deprivation, and positive identity in contrast with negative stereotype.
Trillin, Calvin, and Edward Koren. West, Ted. Emphasizes the transgressive aesthetics of hydraulics and the characteristic movements of a lowrider. Technical Guides Though addressed to the practitioner rather than the scholar, mechanical manuals are useful sources for researchers, given the high level of detail and extensive visual representation of the process of customizing a lowrider.
While covering much material in common, these publications differ in the degree to which the cultural context of lowriding is addressed. Hamilton , for example, treats the style strictly as a version of automotive craft, which the author intends to make accessible for any enthusiast, and applicable to any vehicle.
Chicano identity of lowriding before covering much of the same ground. Hamilton, Frank. How to Build a Lowrider. North Branch, MN: Cartech, Ironically, this exclusive focus on detailed technical instruction might make this book more interesting to lowriders themselves than might other texts cited in this bibliography. Lowrider Magazine Editors. New York: HP Books, A production of Lowrider magazine, the book pays respect to cultural origins in the introduction.
Extensive detail on restoring and modifying automobiles follows. Focused Studies Perhaps as a sign of the maturation of lowrider studies as a field, scholars have moved beyond rehashing basic descriptions of the form and invoking its relevant contexts.
The works cited in this section focus on one or more aspects of lowriding and the larger issues that they raise. These are also addressed on some level in most other accounts of lowriding, but the works listed here go into greater detail than most to pursue their central questions. Poetics and Aesthetics While general overviews of lowriding tend toward historical approaches, several works of scholarship focus on how lowriding functions semiotically and aesthetically.
Bright characterizes Los Angeles lowrider murals as breaking with the earlier iconography of Chicano nationalism. Turning from the culturalist validation of lowriders in terms of Mexico, the author interprets the popular cultural images of metropolitan conflict that she identified in an earlier essay Bright , cited under Cultural Politics.
Chappell analyzes lowrider poetics using class-cultural notions of scale drawn from the work of Susan Stewart. McQuilkin , a dissertation in fine arts, is a tour de force. It is the most substantial scholarly work by far on lowrider bicycles, as well as being the product of perhaps the most in-depth participant observation ever achieved by a researcher of lowriding. The author—an artist and art teacher—not only worked with clubs and curated bike shows, but also built a bike that took second place nationally at the annual Las Vegas supershow.
Providing a wealth of detail on lowriding as an embodied form of identity consciousness, Bright concludes that local culture creatively appropriates images of modernity in acts of cultural autonomy. Available online for download or by subscription. Edited by Michael Ryan, — Malden, MA: Blackwell, An ethnographic dissertation providing an anthropological view of lowriding as an element of American culture, from the perspective of a Norwegian researcher.
Zeros in on transgressive aesthetics through the figure of the outlaw. McQuilkin, Kyle S. Cultural Politics Confrontation across lines of cultural and political affiliation has been a theme in writing about lowriders from the earliest published texts. Lowriders have actively distinguished themselves from other car customizers, most of all from Anglos, and have struggled for space and legitimacy against historical structures of domination and white-bourgeois privilege.
Chappell cited under Books , these cultural-political struggles have often been waged in terms of social space cited under Urban Spatial Practice and against regulation by police.
Bright relates the visual representation of these concerns in lowrider murals, whereas Chappell depicts how they work out in the contestation of urban space, arguing that this forms an inherent politics to lowriding independent of explicitly political statements. He describes an imagined community emerging as he promotes the magazine far beyond California though he also quotes a neighbor who claims to have brought lowrider style originally to Los Angeles from El Paso.
Edited by Brenda J. Bright and Liza Bakewell, 89— Tucson: University of Arizona Press, The metropolis becomes represented as a site of struggle. An ethnographic article focusing on the cat-and-mouse game of lowrider cruising and police regulation. Plascencia, Luis F. Edited by Mario T. Corona, — Ypsilanti, MI: Bilingual Press, This divides media like Lowrider magazine from popular street practice, which Plascencia presents in turn, taxonomically.
Justice: A Question of Race. Tempe, AZ: Bilingual Press, Personal, political perspective on the regulation of cruising and the early mediation of lowriding. Lowrider Magazine as Public Sphere There is no archive of textualizations and visual representations of lowrider style that is more accessible to students and researchers than Lowrider magazine, but the nature of its relationship to practicing lowriders is neither simple nor without conflict.
While Plascencia cited under Cultural Politics distinguishes between lowrider media and lowrider practice, it does not account for the active engagement that readers and subjects of the magazine carry on with its representations. An appropriate and fruitful approach to the magazine is to treat it as a kind of public sphere where divergent ideas of lowrider culture take shape and are aired. Starting points for this are provided by journalism covering the magazine itself.
Madrid also claimed that a magazine for Chicanas would be the next project for his company, A Toda Madre. That lowriders could command such an audience was not surprising to the editors of Lowrider, given their own circulation of , copies, only 20, of which were procured by discounted mail subscription.
Sandoval undermines the validity of this view of the Lowrider readership, sampling letters to the magazine from and — to show that women are active readers, at times submitting more than half of such letters, and contesting gender inequality in lowriding and barrio life in its pages. Responding to theoretical calls to hear marginalized voices, Delgado tracks different formations of identity in the letters.
Delgado, Fernando P. Extensive theoretical and methodological discussion.
Arizona Super Show
Profile of Lowrider magazine as a follow-up to the surprise success of the first Petersen Automotive Museum exhibit. Discusses the readership, now ,, but only 58 percent Latino. Sandoval, Denise Michelle. Edited by Alicia Gaspar de Alba, — New Directions in Latino American Cultures. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, The best available analysis of Lowrider magazine, examining how the publication appropriated lowriding as a cultural form for profit in the publishing industry, while simultaneously serving as a source for community formation among lowriders.
Lowriders as Art and Artifact Artists and curators have taken as much intellectual interest in lowriders as have writers and scholars. This section introduces various incursions by lowrider style from the street to the gallery and the collection. Artists and Art Books Fine-art photographers, such as those included in Parsons, et al. Colombian American photographer and installation artist Liz Cohen has taken inspiration from lowrider customization and glamour photography for her project that involves building a car and posing as a bikini model in front of it.
It elaborates on the many ways this art resonates with the social context of lowriding. As such, street culture is of a kind with the credentialed art in the exhibition. Chavoya, C.
The extensive presence of lowrider images and media in this body of work suggests a strong connection to the social context of racialized and classed Mexican America, which Chavoya explores in a wide-ranging and critical discussion.
Available online by subscription. Donnelly, Nora, ed. New York: Abrams, Essays on hot rod, kustom, lowrider, and general car culture from authors including Bright and Chavoya.
Gaspar de Alba, Alicia. Irwin, Megan.
Profile of Phoenix-based, Colombian American artist Liz Cohen and her project that includes building a custom car and posing for glamour photography with it. The work has been exhibited internationally. Lowriders have also gradually made their way inside museums, and are included in some permanent collections.
Family members and friends completed the work and the ride was acquired by the Smithsonian Institution in Irene Maria Jaramillo and Dave Jr. Bright cited under Poetics and Aesthetics notes that the inclusion of a lowrider in an exhibit about New Mexico caused come concerns among New Mexico residents of being represented by an object of street culture.
But it is becoming less rare to treat lowriders as collectible historical artifacts. Lopez covers the event and includes details about the winner, a Chevrolet belonging to Rosie and Frank Requena of Dallas. In Los Angeles, the private Petersen Automotive Museum has mounted two exhibitions focusing on lowriders, the first of which presents the dissertation research of Sandoval, who serves as a guest curator and community researcher for the museum Sandoval and Polk The second Petersen exhibition La Vida Lowrider: Cruising the City of Angels makes the case for lowriders as art and includes two elaborately painted pieces.
The first is an ice-cream truck customized and decorated by the visual artist and car club member who goes by the name Cartoon. Catalogue no. Grand Salon exhibition. Los Angeles: Petersen Automotive Museum, — Lopez, Lonnie.
Lowriding: An American Cultural Tradition. Part of the online presence of the Smithsonian Latino Center; includes several essays, photographs, and a bibliography on lowriders. Sandoval, Denise, and Patricia Polk, eds. Arte y Estilo: The Lowriding Tradition. Los Angeles: Petersen Automotive Museum, The catalogue for the first of two lowrider exhibitions at the Petersen.
Includes introductory essays by University of California—Los Angeles folklorist Patricia Polk, Lowrider writer Dick DeLoach, and Sandoval; collected photographs and quotations from California lowriders; and images and commentary on sixteen featured cars. Cowan extends an argument presented in an earlier article for Visual Sociology in vol. Cowan, Peter. Edited by Jabari Mahiri, 47— New York: Peter Lang, Interviews with lowrider enthusiasts and analysis of student artwork disabused Cowan of the stereotype of lowriders as gang culture.
Craig, Dorothy Valcarcel, and Johnna Paraiso. Fehr, Dennis Earl. Edited by Dennis E.
New York: Falmer Press, Fehr reproduces conversations with a former student, frustrated as an art teacher in a barrio middle school. The success of the approach is underscored when students enter a car in the Houston Art Car Parade. Grady, Karen. Edited by Stanton Wortham, Enrique G. Murillo Jr. Hamann, — Westport, CT: Ablex, Lowriders Mentioned in Other Studies The importance and relative ubiquity of lowriders in urban Mexican American experience are underscored by the frequency with which they turn up in studies not specifically focusing on lowriding.
The areas of hip-hop and street style merit separate attention due to the particularly integral role of lowriders in both milieux, at least in California.
Finally, work focusing on youth and public culture has occasioned additional scholarly takes on lowriding. Gradante draws connections between lowriders and Mexican muralists in terms of both iconography and artistic practice.Teen Angel credits Westergard with inventing a special custom door, making smooth hood sides and grille panels by hand, and installing commercially manufactured fender skirts over Art 83 The interior of a lowrider car exhibited at a lowrider show.
Beto eventually succeeds in convincing Kim that he loves her, and she reciprocates by becoming more open in showing her feelings towards him.
Greenwood Press. Paint and body repair shops preferred enamel because it dried faster and was more durable than lacquer, which dried harder. Log In Sign Up.
Gaspar de Alba, Alicia. One of the car clubs featured has a religious focus.