The Pepin Portrait Project

For The Pepin Portrait Project Grupo Soap del Corazón ("Soap of the Heart" artists' group) presents Xavier Tavera's large scale photographic portraits of people living and working in western Wisconsin's rural Pepin county. Powerful, intimate, direct, their eyes draw the observer in. Juxtaposing Latino immigrant farm workers with the grandchildren and great-grandchildren of western European immigrants, Tavera's art challenges viewers to look closely at their own perceptions and biases—and to see the shared humanity of all people.

Fifteen 24" x 32" photographs framed and exhibited on easels, this exhibition is meant to easily travel Wisconsin and Minnesota and elsewhere... indefinitely. Moving from church basement to school hallway to village hall meeting room to coffee shop walls, the exhibition travels with the option of a community talk lead by either Tavera or project curator Dougie Padilla or another Grupo Soap member artist. It is our hope that the self-financed exhibition will move around the Midwest indefinitely.

Founded in 2000 by Mexico City native Xavier Tavera and Minnesota/Wisconsin resident Dougie Padilla, Grupo Soap del Corazón celebrates Latino artists and culture in Minnesota and the upper Midwest of the U.S.A.  To date, Grupo Soap has featured the work of almost 90 artists, local, regional, and international and has shown at museums, non-profit and for-profit galleries, in the streets, and in alternative spaces, in the United States and in Chile.

All images ©2017 ©2018 by Xavier Tavera

Grupo Soap del Corazon would like to thank: 

Mercedes Falk

Susan Jacobsen

Tina Tavera

Reverend Lisa Weaver

Reverend Karna Marks

Alex de la Pena

David Brassfield

Stuart Devaan


To bring this exhibit to your church, village hall, coffee shop, school… contact:

Dougie Padilla