Alessandra Moctezuma is Gallery Director and Professor of Art at San Diego Mesa College, where she leads the Museum Studies program and teaches courses on Chicano Art. She earned Bachelor of Art and Master of Fine Arts (Painting/Printmaking) degrees from UCLA. She is also ABD for a Ph.D. in Hispanic Languages and Literature at the State University in New York, Stony Brook.
Besides teaching and curating, Ms. Moctezuma has been actively involved in the San Diego arts community. She served as a member of the San Diego Foundation’s Arts and Culture group and Creative Catalyst grant panels for several years. She has served in the City of San Diego Public Art Committee and in some of the City grants committees. She is also a board member of the Friends of the Villa Montezuma, an organization that preserves a historic house museum in Sherman Heights. She currently serves in the Curatorial Advisory Board for the San Diego Art Institute, a contemporary arts non-profit located in Balboa Park. The last couple of years she has been on the board of the San Diego Museum of Art’s Latin American Arts Council and she is on the Community Advisory Committee for the Centro Cultural de la Raza.
Ms. Moctezuma has extensive experience as a gallery curator and arts administrator. From 1994-1998, she worked for the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority as the Public Arts Officer for the Eastside Subway extension, and managed large-scale public arts projects for the Red Line, Blue Line and Green Line. Previously, she was the Gallery Curator for the Social and Public Art Resource Center (SPARC) in Venice, California. She also served in the Public Art Commission for the City of Pasadena. Besides working as gallery curator at Mesa College, Ms. Moctezuma has organized exhibits for the Oceanside Museum of Art (Borderless Dreams, 2005 and Through a Lens Sharply, 2006) and unDocumenta (2017) as part of the Getty’s initiative Pacific Standard Time LA/LA.
Upcoming projects include curation of a retrospective of Chicana artist Judith F. Baca for the Museum of Latin American Art in Long Beach, CA and Twenty Women Artists at the Oceanside Museum of Art, both scheduled to open in Spring 2021.
When she has time, Ms. Moctezuma, makes art and exhibits her work. As a visual artist, Ms. Moctezuma critiques social gender conventions and assumptions through the use of irony and satire. She painted the mural Homage to Siqueiros(1998) with Eva Cockcroft, in East Los Angeles at the former location of the arts center Self-Help Graphics. Ms. Moctezuma is one of the founding members of the Latino architect-artist collaborative ADOBE LA. With ADOBE LA, she curated a series of installations and produced a video and catalog for two exhibitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles. She was also a member of the arts collective Collage Ensemble and worked on various projects including performances for the Los Angeles Arts Festival and in Osaka, Japan and Mexico City.
Born in Mexico City, Ms. Moctezuma is the daughter of cult film-maker and popular newscaster Juan Lopez-Moctezuma and museum educator Yolanda Garcia-Rubio. She immigrated to Los Angeles with her family in 1981. She is married to writer Mike Davis and has four children.