The Mexican Museum unveils the Tequila Don Julio Collection on September 23, 2011 as part of its ongoing celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. The Tequila Don Julio Collection makes its permanent home at The Mexican Museum in San Francisco following a successful traveling exhibit that included stops in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago and Houston.

This is the first time the entire collection will be on display for public viewing in San Francisco. The new exhibit opens to the public on Friday, September 23 and runs through August 5, 2012. A press preview of the collection will be held Wednesday, Sept. 21 from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m., in The Mexican Museum's recently renovated galleries at Fort Mason Center.

"We are honored that the entire Tequila Don Julio Collection will be on display here at The Mexican Museum," said Jonathan Lorenzo Yorba, chief executive officer of the Museum. "Having this important art collection here in its new permanent home is the culmination of a long-term shared vision."

The new contemporary art collection, which is made possible in part with generous support from Tequila Don Julio, showcases the expressive, cutting-edge vitality of 17 of today's most prominent Mexican and Mexican American contemporary artists -- three of whom live in the Bay Area.

The Bay Area artists with works in the collection, and who are available for media interviews:

  • Viva Paredes - The inspiration for Paredes' piece "My Pocha Tongues" came from her grandmother Petra, a curandera and her Mexican American family's strides to assimilate into American culture, which included not being allowed to speak Spanish. Paredes continues her grandmother's tradition of healing by creating artwork that explores the sacred space of ancestral memory, culture and linguistic history.
  • Caleb Duarte - Duarte migrated with his family from northern Mexico to the farmworking communities of the Central Valley. The themes of architecture, shelter and home have been central to his art. Duarte's inspiration for exploring social inequalities and the realities of globalization come from his world travels. Recently his focus has shifted from the notion of shelter to the symbolism of social protection and truth found in what he calls "architectural sanctuaries." Duarte searches for the truth and balance between message and messenger.
  • Julio César Morales - Morales' artwork is a reflection of his binational upbringing in Tijuana and San Diego and seeks to expose and decode the DNA of transcultural life, the small things that shape who we are and the world we live in. Morales' Lowrider Mambo sculpture boldly references the musical legacy of Cuban bandleader, Pérez Prado, who was the first Latin American artist to "crossover" internationally with a music style of his own invention, "The Mambo."

Artist Jorge Rojas, born in Mexico and now living in Salt Lake City, will be working on his piece on site at The Mexican Museum from September 19 to 23. He is available for media interviews.

Other featured Mexican and Mexican American artists in the collection include: Ray Martín Abeyta, Tania Candiani, Einar and Jamex de la Torre, Francisco Fernández aka TAKA, Camille Rose Garcia, Michael Hernandez de Luna, Franco Mondini-Ruiz, Tatiana Parcero, Marcos Ramírez aka ERRE, Jerómino López Ramírez aka Dr. LAKRA, Betsabeé Romero and Arturo Ernesto Romo.

The Mexican Museum is open Wednesday-Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. and is located at Fort Mason Center, Building D, in San Francisco. For more information, please

About The Mexican Museum:

Founded by San Francisco artist Peter Rodriguez in 1975 in the heart of the Mission District and now at Fort Mason Center, The Mexican Museum is the realization of a vision to exhibit the aesthetic expression of the Mexican and Mexican American people. Today, the Museum's vision has expanded to reflect the evolving scope of the Mexican, Chicano and Latino experience. The Museum currently has a permanent collection of more than 14,000 objects reflecting Pre-Hispanic, Colonial, popular, Modern and Contemporary Mexican, Latino and Chicano art. For more information, please visit: