Helen Escobedo

(Mexico, 1934-2010)


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Installed on the Mexican side of the border, By the Night Tide/Junto a la marea nocturna consisted of three somewhat hopeless boats made of wire mesh. El Topo (the Mole), El Sapo (the Toad), and El Pollo (the Chicken) were installed on the beach adjacent to the then recently-installed metal border fence extending 1,200 meters into the Pacific Ocean. Each boat was outfitted with a catapult aimed to launch retaliatory coconuts over the metal fence into the US. The artist arranged with the owner of a fresh fruit and ice cream kiosk located near the beach to keep the catapults “armed” with coconuts at all times during the public phase of INSITE 94.

Curator: Walther Boelsterly
Organizer: Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes on behalf of the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes
Venue: Playas de Tijuana

Helen Escobedo, By the Night Tide, inSITE94.


Collaborating with three other artists for her INSITE97 project, Helen Escobedo created a three-room installation at the ReinCarnation Project in downtown San Diego. Milk at the L’Ubre Mooseum was a spoof on the continuous efforts to improve milk’s marketability. The three rooms—the De-Spotting Room, Freeze-Dri Room, and PR Room—incorporated the machinery and equipment left from the ReinCarnation’s milk factory and introduced new objects, such as the oversized papier-mâché cow suspended from the ceiling, sadly stripped of its spots. In her proposal, Escobedo suggested the installation was meant to examine the meaning of milk to people on both sides of the border.

Curators: Jessica Bradley, Olivier Debroise, Ivo Mesquita, and Sally Yard
Venue: ReinCarnation Project, San Diego