Radical sculptor and printmaker Elizabeth Catlett’s close relationship with Mary Ann Pollar and the Rainbow Sign testifies to the respect that Pollar’s vision commanded from figures ranging from far-Left to moderate center. As this article from the Berkeley Barb points out, the event celebrating Catlett’s work—along with the proclamation of the week of March 29 as “Elizabeth Catlett Week” in Berkeley—made it a warm homecoming for the artist. Though born and raised in Washington, DC, Catlett was a naturalized Mexican citizen, having fled over the southern border during the Cold War when her political views had made remaining in the U.S. more dangerous than usual for a politically-active black woman.

She left Mexico and her position heading her department at the University of Mexico, and brought her son Juan to the United States so that she could make an appearance at the Rainbow Sign.