Danza Indigenas. 1994.
(Indigenous Dances)

20′ high archway
Acrylic, mixed media ands concrete

A public artwork created for the Baldwin Park Metrolink commuter rail station, Civic Center, City of Baldwin Park, CA.

“Danza Indigenas” (Indigenous Dance) is composed on floor patterns, brass strips and lettering chronicling the colonial mission systems impact on indigenous people in five languages, (Gabrielino, Chumash, Luisueno, English and Spanish). It incorporates a 100-foot plaza and a 400-foot platform with five shelters. Central to the design is the 20-foot-high recreation of an archway in one wall of the nearby San Gabriel Mission.

Top: Images from the protest on May 11, 2005

To learn more about the Baldwin Park Controversy:

Comprehensive Documentation

Baldwin Park Monument Protest Video

About Protest in Baldwin Park

“A face-off Saturday in Baldwin Park over illegal immigration, sparked by a piece of public art, was peaceful despite authorities’ fears of violence.

Next to City Hall, where about 60 protesters opposed to illegal immigration waved signs and American flags, about 600 counter-protesters sang, danced, chanted and beat drums to urge tolerance.

…Ventura County-based Save Our State has been pressuring the city for two months to remove inscriptions on an archway called “Danza Indigenas” at the Metrolink station. It staged a similar protest last month, which also was met with a large counter-protest. The group has acknowledged that it seeks to put pressure on the city to remove the monument by draining its resources through protests.”

Los Angeles Times 

“Judy Baca’s public artwork provides a model for the community-based reclaiming of sites of memory. “Danza Indigenas” actively remembers not only the indigenous peoples of this land but also the historical context of conquest that was ultimately about the erasure of histories. The power of Baca’s public art production and community-based process is evident by the vision it inspires for social change. I’m witness to this power, and it has shaped my reality.” 

Cesar Lopez, San Clemente