Chinese American Museum
425 North Los Angeles Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
March 13 - July 8, 2014
Opening reception: March 13, 2014, 7-9pm
LA Heat: Taste Changing Condiments, is an art exhibition exploring the impact of Sriracha and Tapatio in Los Angeles. The exhibit will include a curated selection of artwork from artists of diverse backgrounds who are passionate and reflective about notions of identity, community, and foodways.
Sriracha and Tapatio hot sauces are two examples of the recent homegrown all-American condiments that have dramatically impacted American cuisine. The rise in popularity of these condiments signifies an increase in Asian and Latino populations living in the US and especially in Los Angeles after the passing of the Immigration and Nationality Act in 1965. In 1971, Mexican immigrant Jose-Luis Saavedra, Sr., started Tapatio Hot Sauce, a unique combination of red chili peppers, spices and a hint of garlic, in a warehouse in Maywood, California. David Tran, an immigrant from Vietnam of Chinese ancestry, started making Thai-inspired Sriracha sauce blended from chili peppers, vinegar, and garlic in small shop in Los Angeles Chinatown in 1983. In large American cities everywhere, both Sriracha and Tapatio contend to rival Heinz Ketchup and French’s mustard as the all-American condiment for the Y-Generation, for these hot sauces have become interwoven into the American cultural fabric and thus becoming an ubiquitous condiment in American cuisine.
Participating artists in the exhibition include:
Edith Beaucage, Erik Benjamins, Audrey Chan, Ching Ching Cheng, Dave Chung, Chris Christion, Clayton Brothers, Eye One, Gajin Fujita, Daniel Gonzalez, Patrick “Pato” Hebert, Michael Hsiung, Phung Huynh, Tomo Isoyama, Nery Gabriel Lemus, Sandra Low, Trinh Mai, Patrick Martinez, Michael Massenburg, Kwanchai Moriya, Jose Ramirez, Yoshie Sakai, Jose Sarinana, Sand One, Shark Toof, Sket, Slick, Henry Taylor, Werc
Image by Daniel Gonzalez, 2013