“My piece Angelitos was originally commissioned by Mujerista Market. When I was first thrown the idea of brown angels I was so excited to create exactly that. I took creative control to bring these two sitting babies to my world in the clouds.
Taking inspiration from Emile Munier’s Putto’s Kiss, I painted these two cherubs embracing, one kissing the others’ cheek gently. I wanted to capture innocence, lovingness, gentleness, all things indigenous children are not awarded the portrayal of.
Growing up I rarely ever saw representation in art, something that stuck with me as a child. Artistry seemed unattainable because the talent of Women of Color was never celebrated, specifically indigenous women artists. This seemed a predominately white and male space, from the subjects to the artists themselves. I took to loving cherubs for their serenity, examining paintings of white, winged babies since I was a child.
When painting these two brown angels, it felt healing. I painted something for other brown people to see their inner child. I wanted to make sure they [the angels] exuded nothing but comfort, relaxation, serenity, and love.”
Lili Navarro specializes in acrylic portraiture, depicting femme in all ways it is exhibited by those around her. Lili’s work is about representation. Her paintings depict brown people in celebratory ways; bathed in gold rays like the Virgin of Guadalupe, or surrounded by roses. Her subjects are beautiful, powerful and present.