La U.S.A. and the three diablos [The EE.UU. y los tres devils], from The New Immigration
37.9 x 56.1 cm (14 15/16 x 22 1/16 in.)
(Los Angeles, California, 1952 - )
Medium and Support:
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, Gift of Gilberto Cárdenas, 2017
In 1988, Sister Karen Boccalero and Gilberto Cárdenas worked together to organize this portfolio entitled "The New Immigration" ["La nueva inmigración"], of ten etchings by five artists. The prints, sponsored by Self Help Graphics and co-published by Galería Sin Fronteras, were produced at Taller Romero in Mexico City by printer Renato Esquivel Romero. According to Cárdenas, this series pays “homage to the perseverance and dignity of the new Latino immigrants as they struggle with the transition into American society.” He has also said that they are a reminder of “the role that immigration plays in enriching the economic vitality of our society and the contributions that the immigrants and their children will have in making American society a better community for tomorrow—a community ‘sin fronteras.’” Each of the five selected artists presents a distinctive take on politics, immigration, and the border.
In his work Léo Limőn exposes political corruption on both sides of the border. His works illustrate voter suppression and government-supported exploitation on behalf of the agricultural and oil industries. In "La U.S.A. and the three diablos", he represented the Mexican government as a demonic monster, cozied up next to the PRI, the Institutional Revolutionary Party that held power from 1929 to 2000, and Pemex, the state-owned petroleum company. An equally monstrous personification of the United States is visible waiting for laborers to run across the river.