La Güera,

Ana Hernandez

Oil on canvas | Óleo sobre tela
60.96 x 63.5 cm (24 x 25 “)
Private collection | Colección privada
Photo courtesy of the artist | Imagen cortesía de la artista

Artist’s Statement

I used the neck of an old headless Barbie I’ve had since I was a kid. I grew up with a ton of Barbies. I had 79 at one point. My mom would buy me one every Friday before she would drop me off at my grandmother’s house for the weekend in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico: “el otro lado—the other side.” 

It was important to my mom that I was thin and attractive and stayed out of the sun. Being güera or light-skinned was an important thing in my family.

Now I’m older and can accept and appreciate a lot of the things I’ve gone through or denied as a part of myself. It is an effort. Though she is proudly displaying herself, she is still hiding behind all of it: looking through the flowers to see if you approve.