Death of Apollo Creed
Death of Apollo Creed was first shown at Claremont College, then the Mexicali Biennial traveled to three locations: Oits, La Casa del Tunel in Tijuana, and Mexicali University. The third location was Currency at the Eastside International in Los Angeles.
In the 1980s the U.S. was beginning to experience a large influx of immigration of a different kind. A movement of generations seeking what it meant to be “American”. Taken from the notion of the “American Dream”, Death of Apollo Creed is a video and multimedia installation that comes from a place of nostalgia for the artist. When he first experienced this scene from the highly successful film Rocky IV (1985) Lopez did not understand the themes that were presented by Creed’s patriotism… political and social issues that he considers to be relevant today.
In this movie clip, Ivan Drago’s character, foreign and intimidating, represents the past and present border issues that inundate American politics. Creed’s slaying following James Brown’s Living in America depicts the constant social struggles between claiming patriotism and protecting foreign cultures on American soil.
The scene is also translated into Spanish to represent the significance of loss that occurs when translation comes into play. We leave behind our old ways, clinging on to conviction no matter where we come from. This scene is a constant reminder to the artist that through the Death of Apollo Creed we are Living in America.