Wild Card Boxing Club Calavera Print

    

Wild Card Boxing Calavera

Edition of 300

Signed and Numbered

Signed by Freddie Roach & Ernesto Yerena Montejano

$40 Plus Shipping

Print goes to sale HERE. 

 

Print to be released: Friday October 9, 2015

T-Shirts will be available to buy at: WildCardBoxingStore.com

Freddie Roach and Ernesto Yerena Montejano signing prints together at Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, CA.

Freddie Roach and Ernesto Yerena Montejano signing prints together at Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, CA.

Growing up in a Mexican-American working class family and community, I remember how important sports were to most of my friends and their families. Particularly, I so remember the early 90’s and seeing a lot of Raider, Charger, Chivas de Guadalajara and America jersey’s and of course those of the Dodger’s and their blue and white hats with the iconic LA blazoned on the front. But my immediate family was different. My dad who in the early 1990’s sold automotive paint and painted cars was surprisingly not that much into the usual sports but all except for BOXING! At that point in time I remember the gatherings at my house when there was a Julio Cesar Chavez fight, a De La Hoya fight or a Maromero Paez fight. My dad would bring the TV outside, set-up a bunch of chairs, roll out the grill, fire up the mesquite and lay down the marinated carne asada before the first round bell. I remember how much fun those days were and how much pride people had in the Mexican fighters.

One of my most vivid and cherished memories of anything to do with boxing was again in the early 90’s. My Tio Amando, who has now since passed away, was a janitor at an elementary school in Mexicali. One Friday night he had set-up one of the classrooms for the family to watch a fight. I remember my family bringing beer and food and seeing my grandparents struggling to sit in those combination seat/desk things and enjoying the fight. I think of all the loud cheering that went on during that fight. That’s when I think of what the sport of boxing means to me. To me boxing is a connection to my family, my community, my childhood. 

For a while I stopped following the sport of boxing. I went to college and could never seem to find the time or a special place to the watch the fights. But I got back into viewing boxing when Manny Pacquiao began catching the reputation for his style and relentless fighting ability. Quickly I became a fan and started following his career. That’s when I learned about his trainer, the Legendary Freddie Roach and Wild Card Boxing Club. He not only trains Manny but he has trained numerous boxing legends including, Mike Tyson, Oscar De La Hoya, Bernard Hopkins and Julio Cesar Chavez to name a few. Although many professional boxers and celebrities have entered through the doors into the humble surroundings of this club, there is no pretentious attitude that’s directed towards anyone. On my first visit as I walked up those stairs and into the Club, I saw a diverse crowd training here, boxers ranging of all ages, nationalities and gender. The Wild Card Boxing Club has a genuine welcoming spirit and the people Mr. Roach chooses to work with him also share that same quality. 

I am humbled and honored to be given an opportunity to create a graphic art piece in collaboration with Freddie Roach and the whole Wild Card Boxing Club family.  Originally the concept that I was given by WCBC was that they where interested in me creating a Mexcian themed graphic.  I decided to create one of my iconic Dia De Los Muertos Calavera graphics with the theme revolving around boxing culture.  While touring the Club, it was easy to notice that many flags of various countries were represented on the walls. They hung proudly as representatives proclaiming their respect and love for the sport of boxing.  Although this was suppose to be a Mexican themed skull I wanted to make sure that this graphic is inclusive of the different nationalities that give so much to this rich culture.  Hopefully it not only reflects my artistic feelings and love for the sport of boxing but to all those who love boxing as an art. 

thanks-e

Legendary Boxing Champ Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. 

Legendary Boxing Champ Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. 

Mickey Rourke and Freddie Roach. 

Mickey Rourke and Freddie Roach. 

Mario Lopez and Freddie Roach.  T-Shirts to be sold on WildCardBoxingStore.com 

Mario Lopez and Freddie Roach.  T-Shirts to be sold on WildCardBoxingStore.com 

New Mural on Sunset Blvd.

Not many people know that I spent sometime living in Echo Park. It’s a beautiful neighborhood full of life and struggle. At any given moment you can walk by a señora hustling by selling tamales and over hear hipsters talking about what coffee shop they want to hang out in. I got a lot of love for Echo Park, so when the opportunity to collaborate with Red Bull for their latagráfica mural project came up, I was excited to do it there. Echo Park has a long history of being a working class community. In the 60s, Cuban Refugees made it there home, along with raza in the 70s and 80s, but in the last few years, gentrification has changed it into a shadow of its former self.

Photo by Rob Zugala

Photo by Rob Zugala

I wanted to be intentional with the imagery for the mural and where it was going to be placed, that’s why I chose “El Centro del Pueblo”. El Centro provides social services to youth in the community to improve their quality of life, along with families living in Echo Park and the city of Los Angeles. They help meet the needs of the community in whatever shape or form that may take, which is why a lot of their programing is family inclusive.  I was also excited that the building had the words "El Centro" on it since I am from the small city of El Centro, CA.

Progress shot by Eduardo Yerena Montejano 

Progress shot by Eduardo Yerena Montejano 

I decided on going with my calavera (sugar skull) in the tradition and spirit of Dia de los Muertos/Day of the Dead. The calavera is a reminder that death is a natural part of our lives and not something that should be mourned, but celebrated. Teacher and elder Ofelia Esparza once described to me last tres muertes (three deaths) we all under go in our lives: the moment we take our last breath, the moment our spirit leaves our bodies and lastly and the worst of all is when we are forgotten. That’s why we celebrate and honor the lives of our ancestors, to not forget them and to continue breathing life into the traditions and history passed down from one generation to the next.

I originally created the image for a canvas and limited edition prints in 2011. I used imagery and symbols that represented figures like Oscar Zeta Acosta, but also as symbols that serve as a reminder that Chicanas/os are indigenous people as well. The sacred heart comes from Catholicism, as a reminder of how the Catholic Church re-appropriated indigenous symbols and icons for their own gains. Having heart also means having strength, while the fire represents the spirit of ganas, knowledge, and resistance.

Nick Bowers and Rob Zugala 

Nick Bowers and Rob Zugala 

The wall was painted on September 5th and I couldn’t have done it without the help of Nick Bowers and Rob Zugala. I have a fear of heights, so I relied on the help of my friends and co-workers, who have also assist Shepard Fairey on most of his murals around the country and abroad, to complete the mural.  

I’m grateful for the opportunity to leave this mural in Echo Park and to be working on this project. I can’t do this work on my own, and I just can’t talk about this project without giving thanks and shout outs to a few folks here and there:

  • El Centro Del Pueblo for the wall and their work in the community
  • Manny Rodriguez for getting the wall
  • My brother Eddie
  • My girlfriend Dolores for hanging out while the mural got painted
  • The homie Picazo
  • Tom & Billy for managing the Latagrafica Mural Project
  • Red Bull Crew (Christian, Paula, Malverde and the rest of crew)

My mural is number 9 out of 10 in this series of murals that are all over Los Angeles. I’m blessed to be a part of this and to be in such great company with all the other artist participating.

thanks-e

Welcome to the new Hecho Con Ganas website!

FINALLY!  After about 6 years of procrastinating and not working on my website I finally got it done!  Since I worked on it myself there may be a few bugs, typos, etc. so if you catch anything please let me know by using the contact page.  So let me get you upto speed.  In 2011 I moved to Phoenix, AZ, in 2012 I moved to Austin, TX, and late last year I moved back to LOS ANGELES.  This time I moved East of the river in Boyle Heights.  I dig it here alot, It reminds me a lot of where I grew up except without all the country but the RAZA is definitely in the building haha. It is very inspiring to be back.  I spent the last couple years enjoying living in the different parts of the country and just last month I finally made it out to Australia for about 3 weeks.  So now that im back and getting settled in I decided to not sleep for about 5 days and knock out the new website start to finish. CON GANAS!  I put all of my work up here (I might have missed some) and wrote some descriptions for selective works.  

We have some very exciting projects and print releases coming up in the near future so stay tuned.  If you wish to be kept up to date on print releases please subscribe to our newsletter here.

I really hope you enjoy check out the site and going through the work if you have any questions please feel free to contact us using the contact page.  We go through all the mail that comes in as fast as we can.  Thank you for your interest and your time. - ernesto