Josué Rojas tackles gentrification in Mission exhibit
Mission artist and muralist Josué Rojas exudes an eclectic mix of old-school cool and contemporary creativity through his artwork, which encompasses an array of styles ranging from graffiti to traditional oil painting.
Rojas proudly refuses to be confined artistically:
“I wouldn’t know how to classify what I do. … Part of it is definitely street art. Part of it is definitely mural. And part of it is certainly kind of outsider. So I kind of do take part, and am inspired by all of these kinds of traditions within the ‘Modern Mission experience.’”
Born in El Salvador, Rojas was still an infant when he and his family fled the country’s civil war in the early 1980s. Like many others, they eventually found haven and place to call home within the thriving Latino community in San Francisco’s Mission District.
Through the years, Rojas’ community and neighborhood have been a source of inspiration in his work.
As a product of his environment, Rojas has had to endure the growing pains of a community that has increasingly been impacted by displacement—homelessness, economic disparity, evictions and forced migrations—of its long-term residents.
Rojas tackles these and more issues head on in “Géntromancer!” an exhibition that takes its name from William Gibson’s cult-classic 1984 cyberpunk novel “Neuromancer.”
The complete version of this article originally appeared in the August 11, 2016 edition of El Tecoloté.