Ernesto Yerena was born in El Centro, CA, a mid-sized farming town bordering Mexicali, BC, MX. Fueled by his transnational upbringing, his art practice reflects his observations of the views and interactions between the Mexican communities living on both sides of the border. His work depicts his frustrations with the oppression in his community, as well as his interest in the defense of dignity and rights. Through his brazen imagery of cultural icons, rebels, and everyday people, he brings political concerns to light and voices his stance against oppression. In 2008 Yerena created the Hecho Con Ganas (hechoconganas.com) publishing project, which produces political images that are produced in limited edition silkscreen prints. Highly recognized for his activism, Yerena is the founder and curator of the Alto Arizona Art campaign (2010), as well as a founding member of the We Are Human campaign (2009). Yerena has collaborated on many thought-provoking projects with artists such as Zack de la Rocha, Shepard Fairey, Manu Chao, Ana Tijoux, Philip Lumbang, Jaque Fragua, Exist 1981, Diane Ovalle, Chuck D, and Mochilla.
Yerena’s piece represents the way in which the movement of migrants overall is something beautiful and dignified - an action that makes the world a more peaceful place.