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Finding guide to the Simón Silva Papers CEMA 68
CEMA 68  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access Note
  • Conditions Governing Use Note
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Processing Information
  • Biographical Sketch
  • Series Description
  • Related Material
  • Separations

  • Title: Simón Silva papers
    Identifier/Call Number: CEMA 68
    Contributing Institution: UC Santa Barbara Library, Department of Special Collections
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 3.4 linear feet (1 document box, 1 oversize box, 9 posters)
    Date (inclusive): 1991-1997
    Abstract: Simón Silva is a Chicano Artist who paints vibrant and colorful images that are reminiscent of his own culture. His collection to grow over time presently includes notecards, photographic prints, posters, and slides which exemplify his individualistic artwork. Also included is correspondence relating to the published children's story he illustrated, and a copy of the actual book, Gathering the Sun: An Alphabet in Spanish and English.
    Physical Location: Del Norte
    Language of Materials: The collection is in English and Spanish

    Conditions Governing Access Note

    Service copies of audiovisual items may need to be made before viewing or listening. Please consult Special Collections staff for further information.

    Conditions Governing Use Note

    Copyright has not been assigned to the Department of Special Collections, UCSB. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Department of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which also must be obtained.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of Item], Simón Silva Papers, CEMA 68. Department of Special Collections, UC Santa Barbara Library, University of California, Santa Barbara.

    Acquisition Information

    Donated by Simón Silva, 1994.

    Processing Information

    Collection processed by Michelle Wilder, October 4, 2004, guide updated by Callie Bowdish and Mari Khasmanyan, 2013.

    Biographical Sketch

    Simón was born in Mexicalli, Mexico in 1961. He grew up in Holtville, California a small border town in Southern California. He is one of eleven children that grew up as migrant field workers. At an early age of eight years old, Simón found himself working the fields and eventually traveling to Oregon and Washington to work during the summers. Because of the lack of respect for his type of labor and his family's lack of educational support, Simón grew up with a low self esteem and with very little respect for his culture. Art would be his saving grace, nurturing his self esteem and keeping him focused on pursuing an education. It wasn't until he came to understand and appreciate his culture that he was able to find his true purpose in life.
    In 1986, he received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. As a Chicano Artist Simón celebrates his bilingual and bicultural life and hopes that others will do the same. His art is a reflection of what he considers to be a great asset that all of us have in this country, that is, the opportunity to use our multicultural make up to our advantage.
    Simón lives in San Bernardino, California, with his wife María, and their three sons, Josué, Francisco Xavier, and Emilio. He spends a great deal of time traveling around the country lecturing at schools. He finds it very important to inspire other lives by sharing his art and his personal experiences.
    It's the sensory appeal of Simón's work that first captures our attention and invites us to take a closer look. Our eyes are immediately seduced by the vibrant colors which give his artwork a signature style like no other Chicano artist. All of the images are soothing to the eyes and familiar to the heart. Each painting is similar in style, yet uniquely independent of the others, just like the Chicano culture.

    Series Description

    Series I. Personal and Biographical, 1993-1997 This series housed in box 1 contains two folders of correspondence. One folder is of incoming correspondence and the other is correspondence from the childrens story Gathering the Sun which Silva illustrated.
    Series II. Notecards, 1991-1997 This series contains 15 notecards of Simon Silva's artwork. They are smaller versions of his posters and book illustrations. They are located in box 1, folders 3-5 and are in order by date, then title.
    Series III. Slides, 1991-1994 This series contains 15 slides of his artwork. They are found in box 1, folder 6 and are in the order in which they were received.
    Series IV. Photographic Prints, undated This series contains 11 photo copies of the artist's posters and illustrations. They are untitled and undated. They are located in box 1, folders 7-8.
    Series V. Lithographs, 1992-1997 This series contains 9 offset posters by Simon Silva. A few of the posters are large versions of his book illustrations. They are all signed by the artist. One is signed specifically for an individual who worked with his collection. They are organized alphabetically.
    Series VI. Publications, 1997 Series six contains newspaper clippings about Simon Silva which are housed in oversize box 2. This series also includes a copy of the book, Gathering the Sun: An Alphabet in Spanish and English which was illustrated by Silva.
    Series VII. Video Recordings, undated Series seven contains a three minute video recording called Latino Artists for Patrick Perez where Silva discusses the inspiration for his pieces.

    Related Material

    The following material is available by searching the UCSB Library Online catalog.
    Green Web, poems by Juan Delgado, cover art by Simón Silva, University of Georgia Press, 1994


    The following materials have been removed and are available by searching the UCSB Library Online catalog.
    1.) El Campo, poems by Jaun Delgado, paintings by Simón Silva; 1998, Capra Press; paperback. 2.) Small Town Browny, Cosecha de la Vida by Simón Silva; Arte Cachanilla; paperback, autographed, 1998

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Silva, Simon
    Mexican American art -- 20th century