For decades, Chicano performance artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña has challenged our notion of identity and demanded exploration of “other” through lush, interactive tableaus. In 1998’s Mexterminator Project — the “Techno-Museum of Experimental Ethnography and Apocalyptic Culture” created with fellow journeyman Roberto Sifuentes — a car in the shape of a glossy high-heeled shoe roared through a gallery of cross-cultural mash-ups; a she-male in a mariachi jacket crucified herself on a glowing cross; members of the audience transformed themselves with props and costumes into Black Panther cowboys, Indian Sufi braves, ninja Chicanas, and Geisha terrorists; one man — performer or visitor, it was hard to tell — explained, “You don’t know who you are until you’ve been someone else.” In a post-9/11 world, where xenophobia and racial profiling are schoolyard topics, the question of identity and perception has become more urgent and complex. Thankfully, La Poncho Nostra — the collaborative performance arts troupe/international network created by Gómez-Peña, Sifuentes, and Erica Mott — has also become more sophisticated, and more beautiful. Their latest set of... More >>>