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Low ‘n Slow: Cruising the Mission

Cheryl L. Guerrero | United States

People line Mission Street during a cruise.

Since 2017, I have been documenting lowrider cruises in the Mission District of San Francisco, considered to be the center of the city’s Latino community. Throughout the Bay Area, lowrider cruises are an expression of pride, aesthetics, and Chicano culture. In many ways, cruises are not just about the car, but also about creativity, style, friendship, and family. Most importantly, they are about culture and community. Although not all lowriders are Chicano, the vibrant style and cultural expression are strongly linked to the Latino- and particularly the Chicano- community. This is especially relevant in the Mission District where gentrification has contributed to the erosion of the historically Latino neighborhood and the displacement of its members. Audrey, who grew up in in the Mission, explains that cruises are “our chance to take it back and to … show that we’re still here. Even if we can’t afford to live in the city that we were born and raised in, we’re still here.”

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