Malaquías Montoya is an American born Chicano poster artist and a major figure in the Chicano Art Movement of the 1960s and 1970s.
Early Life and Teaching
Montoya was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He was raised by a single mother in a family of migrant farm workers (including brother, José Montoya) in California's Central Valley. He joined the U.S. Marines and through the G.I. Bill was able to attend the University of California at Berkeley. In 1968, Montoya founded the Mexican-American Liberation Art Front and was "arguably the most influential Chicano artist collective in the movement".
Since then he has taught at University of California, Berkeley, Stanford University, California College of Arts and Crafts, University of Notre Dame, and University of Texas, San Antonio. Since 1989 Montoya has held a professorship at the University of California, Davis, teaching both in the department of Art and the department of Chicana/o Studies.
Montoya is known for incorporating social justice themes in his work. In 2006 he completed a series of paintings and screenprints on the death penalty which referenced those killed by the death penalty from Ethel and Julius Rosenberg, to Jesus Christ. Other themes include immigration, the zapatista movement, Palestine, and others.