Michael Menchaca, San Antonio, Texas, b. 1985
Michael Menchaca earned his master’s degree from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2015 with a concentration in printmaking.
Menchaca creates a unique video game aesthetic that employs an image-based vocabulary from Mesoamerica. Source materials for his artworks include the Popol Vuh, the Mayan creation myth, and the Codex Borgia, the Aztec manuscript of astronomical and divine events. Menchaca’s narratives address the turmoil created by the drug industry and the struggle that immigrants face in the United States. Representing the immigrants, the cats are the protagonists in Menchaca’s narratives and are always at odds with the rats, who characterize the drug smugglers. Menchaca executes his themes in both prints and video installations, bridging ancient symbols with contemporary materials while infusing them with the current socio-political situations appropriated from newspaper headlines.
A native to San Antonio, Menchaca’s work has been featured in a number of museums and institutions including The Contemporary Austin-Laguna Gloria, Austin, TX; National Museum of Mexican Art, Chicago, IL; Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis, MN; Gilcrease Museum, Tulsa, OK; Mexic-Arte Museum, Austin, TX; Provincetown Art Museum, Provincetown, MA; Mitte Gallery, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX; RISD Museum, Providence, RI; and the Southwest School of Art, San Antonio, TX.