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Selena: Examining Portraiture

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This teacher's guide provides portraits and analysis questions to enrich students' examination of Selena Quintanilla-Pérez, an American singer known as the "queen of Tejano music." Includes the video "Defining Portraiture: How are portraits both fact and fiction?" and the National Portrait Gallery's "Reading" Portraiture Guide for Educators, both of which provide suggestions and questions for analyzing portraiture. Also includes videos of educators and curators talking about her life and accomplishments, as well as an outfit she wore during performances.


  • What do these portraits have in common? How are they different?
  • How are these portraits both fact and fiction?
  • How do these portraits reflect how she wanted to be seen, or how others wanted her to be seen? Consider for what purpose these portraits were created.
  • Having listened to her music, does the portrait capture your image of Selena? Why, or why not?
  • If you were creating your own portrait of Selena, what characteristics would you emphasize, and why?

Keywords: singer, musician, texas, model, fashion designer, entertainer, #BecauseOfHerStory, #SmithsonianMusic


National Portrait Gallery

Selena, Portrait in a Minute

National Portrait Gallery

Selena's Leather Outfit

National Museum of American History