A mass of paper sheets has been pinned and taped to a wall. We see a wealth of things: a postcard of a city labelled “Mexico,” a photo of a circular Mesoamerican stone artifact, a picture of a galaxy, marbled paper, a cropped image of a painted human face, collages made from overlapping circles, a photo of spherical fruit and vegetables (pumpkins, lemons) — circles and spheres occur again and again.

Xochi Solis, A tourist in a dream, 2022, Gouache, acrylic, house latex paint, colored pencil, Dura-lar film, digitally printed Epson paper, hand-marbled paper, colored paper, handmade paper, found images from books and magazines, artist tape, brad nails and rosary nylon cord, Dimensions variable. Courtesy of the artist. Image courtesy of Marcus Chormicle.


A yellow-brown wall hanging raises a framework of excited spikes around a colorful rectangular painting. The painting is too small to make out, but it seems to depict an orange snake wriggling into the air above a body of blue water. Cliffs stand in the background. Cars and people are drowning in the water. There is text under the image, but at this scale it is too tiny to read.

Guadalupe Maravilla, Fire Snake Border Crossing, 2022, Retablo oil on tin, cotton and glue mixture on wood, 85 x 59x 14 in. Courtesy of the artist and P·P·O·W, New York. Image courtesy of Marcus Chormicle


Mar. 5, 2024


Contemporary Ex-votos: Devotion Beyond Medium
Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art
April 19 – November 23, 2024
Opening reception April 19, 2024, 5 - 8 p.m.
The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art is proud to present Contemporary Ex-votos: Devotion Beyond Medium. Shedding fresh light on the understudied iconographic and ideological aspects of traditional Mexican ex-votos—votive retablo paintings—this exhibition features art by contemporary Latinx artists from the United States and Mexico in conversation with selections from the largest collection of retablos in the U.S.. Fifteen of the artists have responded directly to the collection by creating new artworks in consultation with curator Dr. Emmanuel Ortega (Marilynn Thoma Scholar and Assistant Professor in Art of the Spanish Americas at the University of Illinois at Chicago) and the New Mexico State University Art Museum, custodians of the retablo collection.
“Artists undertake a dialogue between historic and new works allowing us to make sense of ex-votos beyond ethnographic and artistic hierarchies,” says Dr. Ortega. For this iteration of Contemporary Ex-votos he has expanded his original New Mexico-based curation to include new artworks by Las Vegas artists Daisy Sanchez, Zully Mejía, and Elena Brokaw; and a video by interdisciplinary Chicago artist Ariella Granados.
Other works include Yvette Mayorga’s gloriously rococo installation that complicates autobiographical and historical meditations with the tyranny of colonially-dictated “good taste;” and a unique collaboration between the New York-based Salvadorean American artist Guadalupe Maravilla and Mexico City-based artist Daniel Vilchis, whose family has been creating ex-votos for their community for four generations. Krystal Ramirez contrasts Las Vegas’ fantastical casino façades with the realities of immigrant labor, while Justin Favela considers the inventive repurposing of the city’s commercial signage by Latinx businesses, and Dan45 Hernandez continues to expand his popular lunchbox autobiographies. Eric J. García draws parallels between the martyrdom of St. Luke and the social and political ills that affect today's working classes. Xochi Solis mingles devotional imagery from the collection with the heavenly actualities of the planets. 
Together, all of the artists consider ex-votos in their holistic complexity—the way they look, the religious and cultural contexts they carry, and the deeply personal stories they insist upon—using them as a lens to magnify contemporary perceptions of history, labor, gender, class, race, colonization, immigration, families, and more.
Contemporary Ex-votos: Devotion Beyond Medium will be on view in the East Gallery of the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art at UNLV from April 19 – November 23, 2024, with an opening reception on the evening of April 19. Dr. Ortega will conduct a free curator’s tour of the exhibition on Saturday, April 20, 1 – 2:30 p.m.
The artists who have responded to NMSU's retablo collection are Justin Favela, Eric J. García, Francisco Guevara, Dan45 Hernandez, Juan Molina Hernández, John Jota Leaños, Guadalupe Maravilla, Yvette Mayorga, Krystal Ramirez, Sandy Rodriguez, Xochi Solis, Daisy Quezada Ureña, Alfredo Vilchis, Daniel Vilchis, and José Villalobos. The exhibition also includes work by Elena Brokaw, Ariella Granados, Zully Mejía, and Daisy Sanchez.
This exhibition has been graciously supported by: The National Endowment for the Arts, Mellon Foundation, The Carl & Marilynn Thoma Foundation, Community Foundation of Southern New Mexico–Devasthali Family Foundation Fund, NMSU College of Arts & Sciences, NMSU Department of Art’s Lilian Steinman Visiting Artists & Scholars Lecture Series; Friends of the University Art Museum; Mullennix Art Museum Fund; George and Lucy Gray Endowed Art Fund; and several private donors. The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art would like to thank the UNLV Makerspace for the use of their facilities. Programming in Las Vegas is supported in part by Meow Wolf.





All of the museum’s galleries are accessible to wheelchair users and other visitors who cannot use stairs. Services such as sign language interpretation can be arranged. Please contact the museum to discuss your needs: barrick.museum@unlv.edu, 702-895-3381.
About the Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art
The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art believes everyone deserves access to art that challenges our understanding of the present and inspires us to create a future that holds space for us all. Located on the campus of one of the most racially diverse universities in the U.S., we strive to create a nourishing environment for those who continue to be neglected by contemporary art museums. As the only art museum in the city of Las Vegas, we commit ourselves to leveling barriers that limit access to the arts. Our collection of artworks offers an opportunity for everyone to develop a deeper knowledge of contemporary art in Southern Nevada. The Barrick Museum is part of the College of Fine Arts at the University of Nevada Las Vegas.
Find Us
The Marjorie Barrick Museum of Art is located in the heart of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas campus. The museum is easily accessed from the west side of campus at the intersection of Harmon Avenue and University Center Drive. Drive east on East Harmon Ave until the road enters the campus and terminates in a parking lot. The Museum will be on your right, next to a desert landscape garden. Directions here.
Visitors may park in metered, staff, and student spots free of charge after 7 pm on weekdays, 1 pm on Fridays, and all day Saturday.
Daily, weekly, or monthly permits can be purchased from Parking and Transportation Services.
Metered parking spaces for visitors can be found in the parking lot outside the Barrick’s entrance, along East Harmon Ave, and in the lot behind the Lied Library. Other metered green zones are available in the Cottage Grove Avenue Parking Garage and parking areas throughout campus. Download the “PayByPhone Parking” app from Google Play or the iTunes app store.