Maria Arganda

Street art is everywhere and yet it is also constantly changing. It goes up, comes down, is painted over and over and recreated again and again. Maria Arganda photographs it as she sees it and places it in the context of the city, street and urban architecture of greater Los Angeles. Ultimately temporary, street art survives in large part due to the keen observation and dogged pursuit of the photographer.

Maria was born and raised in San Bernardino, California. The first daughter of Mexican immigrants, her parents continuously pushed her to be the best at whatever she did to insure that she would have a better life than they had. When she told them she wanted to major in art the look on their faces was priceless; they saw their dreams of their daughter becoming a doctor or a lawyer falling apart. Nevertheless, they supported her. She hadn’t considered how much photography had played a key role in her life until she actually put it to some serious thought. Most families have a few pictures of their children. Maria’s parents took it one step further. They documented everything she did from birth through the age of 12. There were so many photos and photo albums of her that she began to hate having her picture taken.

One memory she recounts is that at the age of 6 she wanted to use her fathers Polaroid camera to take pictures, just like he had done for her whole life, but was never allowed. Not until her mother found an old camera down the street from her house was she able to take photos of her own. That old camera followed her through high school, taking pictures of everything and everyone along the way. Now, so close to graduating from California State University, San Bernardino, she is looking forward to turning her childhood passion into a career.