Showing in Project Room 2 of the Santa Monica Museum of Art from January 21 through April 16, 2011 The Donkey Show explores the myths of tourist travel to Tijuana.

For over a century, millions of Americans have put on sombreros and posed for tourist photographs on top of donkeys in the border city of Tijuana, Mexico. For almost as long, one of the greatest urban legends in all of California history has been the Tijuana donkey show, the much-rumored, often-referenced, but never proven south of the border sex show that is perpetually re-invented in American high school locker rooms. The Donkey Show explores the border’s intersection of myth and reality through a blend of over 200 rare tourist photographs, vintage nightlife ephemera, and pop songs born of American myths of Tijuana. The exhibition is guest curated by cultural anthropologist and graphic design historian Jim Heimann and author and music critic Josh Kun.

A selection of ephemera from The Donkey Show follows after the jump.

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