Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Giving Voice to Immigrant Youth in Philadelphia and Mexico

When you can combine art, culture, immigration and personal stories into one project you have my attention. International mural artist (and Philadelphia native) Michelle Ortiz recently launched the "Aqui y Alla" project. A atransnational public art project, "Aqui y Alla" explores the impact of immigration in the lives of Mexican immigrant youth in South Philadelphia in connection with youth in Chihuahua,Mexico. All four artists working on the project are sharing their stories which are impacted through immigration here in Philadelphia and in Mexico. It takes a lot to share these personal stories and I commend anyone who is able to do this through any art form.

Four artists and communityleaders from the Colectivo Rezizte (Juarez) and Colectivo MadroƱo (ChihuahuaCity) worked with indigenous youth in Mexico. The youth created transportable murals on fiber cloth panels that traveled with the four artists to Philadelphia. Guided by the artists, the transportable mural panels from Mexico will be permanently installed and combined with the images created by the Mexican immigrant youthin South Philadelphia. The end result will be a permanent mural located on 1515 South 6th Street in South Philadelphia that represents the messages of the youth in both communities.

The "Aqui y Alla" project began August 1st and will run through August 19.

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