BENEFIT VIP Performance by Natasha & Cheech Marin

Join Natasha and Cheech Marin on Saturday, October 5, 2013 for a special evening of art and music under the stars. The couple is bringing their exclusive Marin Salon Series outside of their home to support Plaza de la Raza, which has provided performing and visual arts programs and services to youth and families in East Los Angeles since 1970.

4:00 PM to 6:00 PM • Margo Albert Theatre
$100 VIP Admission – advance purchase required

(space limited to 200 attendees)


Each VIP Admission admits one during 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM plus one Chicanitas art book  ($40 value) signed by Cheech Marin plus an exclusive Marin Salon Series performance by classical pianist Natasha Marin with cellist Maksim Velichkin followed by an art talk by Cheech Marin.

VIP INQUIRIES ONLY:  Call Melissa Richardson Banks at (213) 537-4483 or email

6:00 PM to 12 MIDNIGHT
$10 General Admission – for sale in advance and at the door


Each General Admission admits one only after 6:00 PM. Food, drinks, art and other items for sale are not included. This is a 21+ event only. Proper ID is required.

Mariachi Mario Lopez
Thee Commons
Plaza de la Raza Salsa Band
Danza Teocalt
Plaza de la Raza Youth Mariachi Ensemble

Groove Radio featuring Emiliano Miranda

BENEFIT ART SALE featuring works by artists such as Chaz Bojorquez, Retna, David Flury, Margaret Garcia, Patssi Valdez, Richard Duardo, Joe Bravo, Summer Bernal, Hector Silva, Cryptic, Wisk, Galo, Johny Quintanilla, Poala Lopez, Yolanda Gonzalez, Fernando Mercado, Jasper Santos, Ernie Angiano, Frank Romero, Leo Limon, Antonio Pelayo, Jose Alfaro, Alex, Fernando Barragan, Heriberto Luna, Raul Gamboa, Violeta Moreno, James Foster, Skylar Aud, Victor Cabrera, Baine, and Andre Miripolsky, Nick Diaz, Rafael I. Delgado Jr, Luis Fileto, Ruben Angel Zavala, SAPO King Ramos, Hugo Romo, Hector Silva, David Flores, iBelieve, Mario Lopez, Wenceslao Quiroz, Gabriel Flores

Fernando Barragan

SPONSORS (as of 9/15/13)
KGB Gallery
Jarritos LA
Brooklyn & Boyle
Tito’s Handmade Vodka

ART TALK & BOOK SIGNING: Cheech & KPCC Pledge Party

KPCC logoTUE 10/8 @ 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM
KPCC Pledge Drive Party: Conversation & Booksigning with Cheech
KPCC Crawford Family Forum
474 S. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, CA 91105

Directions & Parking

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Downtown Muse Publishes New Cheech Marin Art Book

Image: “City at Night” by Frank Romero, 2010. Courtesy of Cheech Marin Collection.

Chicanitas book coverMany of you already know that I proudly work with Cheech Marin — I have worked side by side with him on many independent projects associated with his amazing Chicano art collection since 2003. We’ve worked together to produce the groundbreaking The Chicano Collection archival limited-edition print series (printed by none other than the master printer himself, Richard Duardo of Modern Multiples Fine Art Editions; sets from which have been donated to major museums across the country such as the Smithsonian, the DeYoung and LACMA), numerous museum exhibitions, a documentary film, several classical music concerts for his talented wife Natasha Marin, salons featuring artists and musicians, and other related arts and cultural projects. Since 2007, I have also researched, catalogued, photographed, and now manage his artworks.

I guess it seems now I have officially become an independent publisher as Downtown Muse through my Arts District-based firm CauseConnect. This Friday’s release through Amazon of Chicanitas: Small Paintings from the Cheech Marin Collection is our latest art book together featuring works that he selected for this publication and for our national exhibition tour. In 2007, I produced and edited his Papel Chicano art book, the winner of the 2008 “Best Design” International Latino Book Award. While I also served as the producer and editor of Chicanitas, this work represents my expanded role as an independent publisher as well. We have more planned … for example, in 2014, keep an eye out for a book featuring Cheech’s essays, which will reveal his unique and always humorous take on Chicano life and culture, accompanied by works specially selected from his collection to illustrate his words. I also have my own book scheduled for release later this fall.

Produced to accompany our nationally touring Chicanitas exhibition, the companion book includes 70 full-color images of small paintings by 27 artists, many from Los Angeles. For details and a tour schedule of the exhibition, visit To download a full press release, click HERE. To buy our book, keep scrolling!

BOOKSIGNING EVENTS: Want a signed book? Stay tuned for our full schedule of upcoming events in Los Angeles and other cities. For an updated list, stay tuned to my website or visit

ChimMaya-Logo-2009THU 10/3 @ 7:30 PM to 9:00 PM
ChimMaya Gallery
5283 E. Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90022

Buy a pre-signed book in advance of the event at ChimMaya Gallery and get VIP treatment! The FIRST 75 people who purchase one or more books receive admittance to an exclusive reception with Cheech and some of the book’s featured artists Yolanda Gonzalez, Margaret Garcia, Cici Segura Gonzalez and Jose Lozano from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM. For details, call (323) 219-3260.

Okay, I did this obligatory plug for our book … so ORDER YOUR COPY OF CHICANITAS TODAY!

To purchase books, click the PayPal button above. You can also buy online on Amazon and through the Cheech Marin website in addition to my Downtown Muse.


Cheech at the Houston Astros Game

Cheech, Melissa, Hannah, and Cameron at Houston Astros batting practice before a game (at Minute Maid Park)

Outside Eat.Drink.Americano on 3rd St. (Arts District – Downtown Los Angeles)

Cheech Marin and Charo coordinating their watches at the Hispanic Scholarship Fund (HSF) awards luncheon at the J.W. Marriott in Downtown Los Angeles

Rise and shine, L.A. (Arts District – Downtown Los Angeles)

Gallery owner Thomas Paul, art advocate Cheech, and sculptor/actor Daniel Stern at Palm Springs Art Fair – photo by Melissa Richardson Banks | Downtown Muse (Palm Springs, California)

Chicano art advocate Cheech with art critic and DTLA resident Shana Nys Dambrot in front of work by Patrick Martinez —(c) Melissa Richardson Banks | Downtown Muse (Palm Springs Fine Art Fair)

Artist and SCI-Arc Supply Store Mgr. Patricia Mitchell at Palm Springs Fine Art Fair (Palm Springs, California)