Hamiltonian Artists is pleased to present Edgar Reyes’s solo exhibition It Was Only a Dream. Inspired by his experience growing up undocumented in the DC area (locally referred to as the DMV) amid the sensationalization of organized crime in the early 2000s, Reyes’s new body of work teases at the blurred lines between Chicano masculinity, criminality, and cultural identity.

Abstracting images from his family archive and layering them with found Chicano relics, Reyes invites viewers into a geometric, pixelated dreamscape reminiscent of his boyhood. Through sculpture, installation, and prints on fabric, Reyes renders the complicated beauty of Mexican American identity and ideals, interrogating the conditions that have come to define them.

Situated in the haze of memory and media, It Was Only a Dream reflects the ways in which projection can warp perceptions and how nostalgia can distort the past.

An artist-led exhibition walkthrough will be held on Saturday, June 8, 3pm. Link to register here. Visit Hamiltonian Artists’ website and follow @hamiltonian_artists on Instagram for more information; details to be announced. 


Edgar Reyes (b. Guadalajara, Mexico) is a multimedia artist and educator based in Baltimore, MD, and the Washington, DC, area. Reyes’s work invites viewers to think about the people, places, and connections they carry with them. His practice draws on the specifics of his own life, and reflections of shared experiences of resettlement and migration. Through his art making he explores his family’s Mexican and Indigenous roots.

Reyes earned his MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and has taught at nonprofit organizations, schools, universities, and museums. His work has been prominently featured in large scale public installations including Sueños (2017), a monumental light box and banners displayed during Baltimore’s Light City Festival, and Xochitl (2021), vivid abstract patterns installed in shop windows in Rockville, MD, as part of the VisArts Make It Visible project.

His work has been featured in galleries and public spaces across the United States. He has developed installations for the Walters Art Museum (Baltimore, MD), where his work was exhibited in dialogue with their permanent collection, and encouraged community participation. 

Recent honors include Janet & Walter Sondheim Art Prize Semifinalist (2024, 2021), Rubys Artist Grant recipient (2021), Keyholder Resident Artist at Pyramid Atlantic Art Center (2021), and Bresler Resident Artist at VisArts (2021). Reyes is a 2022–2024 Hamiltonian Artists fellow.


Hamiltonian Artists’ mission is to build a dynamic community of innovative artists and effective visual art leaders by providing professional development opportunities to early-career artists and by advancing their entrepreneurial success. In 2007, Paul So, an avid painter and a physics professor at George Mason University, founded Hamiltonian Artists and Hamiltonian Gallery with the vision of creating an innovative career incubator program for emerging visual artists. In 2019, the Board of Directors of Hamiltonian Artists chose to merge the two organizations into a single 501c3 nonprofit to better serve the mission.

Today, Hamiltonian Artists is a dynamic catalyst for DC’s creative economy and a vibrant center for contemporary art in Washington, DC. Through its unique investment into the next generation of cutting-edge artists, Hamiltonian helps artists to develop important business skills, professional experiences, and visibility to support and sustain their art career. Through a two-year artist fellowship, artist talks, public events and its membership program, the organization contributes to the vitality of DC’s burgeoning arts scene by deepening the appreciation for contemporary art and culture throughout Washington, DC, and beyond.


Location: Hamiltonian Artists, 1353 U Street NW, Washington, DC 20009

Hours: Thursday–Saturday, 11am–6pm

For more information visit ha-dc.org.

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Add to Calendar 20240525 America/New_York 1353 U Street NW Suite 101 Washington DC 20009 it was only a dream: New works by Edgar Reyes