By Justice Sandoval
The Cheech Marin Center for Chicano Art, Culture & Industry Museum has opened its doors in Downtown Riverside, making it a significant win for Chicanos around the nation, especially in the Inland Empire.
Walking around The Cheech as a young Chicano, I saw my life portrayed in bright colors and museum lighting. The emotion and perspective of each artist felt like home, and from Cheech Marin’s speech, that was his intention, “We can finally redefine inclusion.”
You can feel the passion in Cheech’s voice as he spoke about his collection and the beauty that perfectly depicted his life.
“I collected a lot of these paintings because they reminded me of the neighborhood I grew up in,” said Marin. “I couldn’t be prouder of anything I’ve ever done in my career and life.”
When Cheech was asked about the type of impact he’s hoping to have on young Chicanos by showcasing the art and culture, he said, “I want them to know their art can hang in a museum and represent the community before that possibility even enters their mind.”
Many people living in the Inland Empire can get caught up in the daily grind of working and getting by. Taking a break to embrace culture and diversity will impact our community in ways we can’t even imagine now.
“Things like this can happen. I sincerely believe that if you do good things, good things will happen to you” Cheech Marin.
The Cheech Marin Museum is located at 3581 Mission Inn Avenue, Riverside.