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“El Rey” (1963), Chevrolet Impala (photo by Ted7)

The American love affair with the automobile finds its most exuberant expression in the lowrider, the highly customized cruising vehicle that Chicano/a artists and craftspeople throughout the American Southwest have been building for decades. With its mix of pin-striping, upholstery, airbrush painting, and hydraulic wizardry, the lowrider can be thought of as an automotive gesamtkunstwerk, or total work of artThe exhibition The High Art of Riding Low: Ranflas, Corazón e Inspiración currently on view at the Petersen Automotive Museum, celebrates their legacy and cultural influence, featuring work by 50 artists focused on the legendary car.

This Saturday, the lowrider tradition will come to life at the event “How to Build a Lowrider,” featuring demonstrations of various techniques from hydraulics and engraving, to painting and pin-striping, with several exhibition artists. Participants include Alberto Herrera, Yely Diaz, Chino & Lolo VegaHoppos Hydraulics, and others.

When: Saturday, April 14, 11am–2pm
Where: Petersen Automotive Museum (6060 Wilshire Boulevard, Mid-Wilshire, Los Angeles)

More info at Petersen Automotive Museum.

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Matt Stromberg

Matt Stromberg is a freelance visual arts writer based in Los Angeles. In addition to Hyperallergic, he is a frequent contributor to Daily Serving, and Glasstire.