Keep Me in the Loop!

Esteban Villa, pioneering Latino artist and farm worker champion

It is with sadness that the farm worker movement learned of the passing of Esteban Villa, a nationally recognized artist and muralist, a musician, philosopher, activist, writer, and university professor. He was also a founding member of the famed Royal Chicano Air Force, the Sacramento Latino artist collective. A native of Tulare County, for decades Villa joined his RCAF colleagues in championing Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers. Their art included iconic posters and other pieces that generated support for important UFW organizing, boycott, and political campaigns.

“Esteban Villa and other Chicano artists of the era showed us young people the critical intersection of art, politics, public policy, social equity, and governance,” said Sacramento County Supervisor Phil Serna, who was raised around RCAF members such as Villa. Phil’s own father, the late Sacramento Mayor Joe Serna, was also an original RCAF member.

The farm workers owe a debt to Esteban Villa.