Laura Aguilar, “Three Eagles Flying,” 1990

“In Three Eagles Flying, a self-portrait from 1990, the photographer Laura Aguilar stands, bare-breasted and bound by heavy rope, between the Mexican and American flags. Her lower body is draped with the Stars and Stripes, her face masked by the image of the eagle in the Mexican coat of arms. In a lecture at CalArts years later, Aguilar said that she had initially asked a friend of hers to pose for the portrait. When she explained her idea, the friend declined and said, “It’s about you.”

Image: Laura Aguilar, Three Eagles Flying, 1990, © Laura Aguilar, courtesy the UCLA Chicano Studie Research Center