It turns out November is Peanut Butter Lovers Month. But many of us who grew up in the Latino culture weren’t hip to PB&J sandwiches – quesadillas or fideo were a more likely lunch time snack. Peanut butter is popular in the United States, Australia, United Kingdom, and Canada – but did you know it’s also popular in Papua New Guinea and New Zealand? At least for those of who spent time in Mexico in the 1970s and 1980s, peanut butter wasn’t a hot item – at least not in a sandwich.
Ironically, the first peanut butter was ground up peanut paste made by the ancient pre-Columbian civilizations – the Maya and Aztecs. They would use this paste as one of the main ingredients to make a variety of “moles” (a word that comes from the Náhuatl molli, which means “salsa”.)
Below are some of the favorite childhood foods of some of the people in our Serie Project community…we’re sensing a theme here. It’s all about the pigs!
Paloma Mayorga is an Austin based artist and currently works at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center (MACC). She attended Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, earning her BA in 2010, with a major in Studio Art and a minor in Art History. She has been commissioned to create the portraits of the composers honored at the annual Georgetown Festival of the Arts since 2009, and to paint four murals at the Sacred Heart Community Clinic in Round Rock. She also participated in a collaborative performance with Aztlan Dance Company and Proyecto Teatro, and in a group art exhibition at the MACC.
Paloma Mayorga’s Artist Statement:
Born in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic, Scherezade Garcia‘s work focuses largely on her cultural experiences. As a child she became involved in the arts by participating in mural painting projects with visual artists Elias Delgado and Nidia Serra, influenced by their portrayals of racial and sociological themes.
“[My art] has to do with the Caribbean in general, and especially the Hispanic Caribbean – about heritage, the process of being civilized, and what civilized means, and the selling of the Caribbean as a paradise,” says Garcia.
In 1986, Garcia moved to New York as a student at Parsons School of Design, where she obtained the Parsons Institutional Scholarship and the Dana Foundation Work Grant. Garcia’s work has been continuously exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the United States, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean since 1990.
Garcia is also part of Dominican York Proyecto GRAFICA, a printmaking collective of twelve artists of Dominican descent who live and work in and around New York City. Their first project, Manifestaciones: Expressions of Dominicanidad in Nueva York, was conceived by Pepe Coronado, a peripatetic master printer whose life crossed paths with the Chicano movement.
El Día de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, is a Mexican and Mexican American holiday celebrated on November 1st and 2nd, during which the graves of loved ones are decorated, special foods such as mole and pan de muerto are made, ofrendas (altars), are built to honor the dead, and special festivals and processions are held.
The Day of the Dead has its origins in ancient Mesoamerican cultures that blended with those of the Spaniards who arrived in Mexico in the early 1500s. During the early 20th century, Mexican artist José Guadalupe Posada popularized the skeleton images – the calaveras – associated with the holiday, through his humorous drawings of calaveras, establishing a uniquely Mexican style of art.
During the 1960s and early 1970s, the Chicano Movement embraced El Día de los Muertos as a way to reconnect with pre-Hispanic and Mexican identities. Today, the Day of the Dead continues to be celebrated by Mexicans and Mexican Americans across Mexico and United States every November.
Carlos Donjuan was born in San Luis Potosi, San Luis, Mexico in 1982. He immigrated to the United States with his family at the very young age of 3. He grew up in Dallas, Texas where he discovered graffiti art, which helped him develop a passion for art and painting. He holds an M.F.A from The University of Texas at San Antonio, studying under Ken Little. Donjuan is currently a professor at The University of Texas at Arlington where he teaches drawing and painting.
Currently residing in Dallas, he remains an active graffiti artist painting murals throughout the city. His paintings have been exhibited in several galleries nationally and internationally. The Cheech Marin Collection – which houses the largest private Chicano Art collection in America – recently acquired several of Donjuan’s paintings. Visit Donjuan’s website to learn more about his art.
My work deals with the combination of several subcultures that I am involved with or interested in. Some examples of these movements include graffiti, street fashion, and underground music. These subcultures are rich, diverse and always growing and changing. I attempt to present work that interprets and, in some way glorifies, the people that are part of these scenes. My portraits, like these movements, are influenced and created by mixing the old and the present to create something new.
Sunday night (September 23, 2012) I had the wonderful opportunity to attend a special artist’s reception for the Estampas de la Raza exhibit at the McNay in San Antonio. It was an amazing show, along with Vincent Valdez’ America’s Finest. I felt so lucky to be there. I got to chat with some of the artists that I had met before and also met some new ones.
Adriana Corral is a third-year MFA candidate in Sculpture and Assistant Instructor at The University of Texas at Austin. She was born in El Paso, Texas and received her BFA from The University of Texas at El Paso. She recently had a solo show, Voces de las Perdidas, at Mexic-Arte Museum in Austin, and her work has been featured at the National Mexican Museum of Art in Chicago.
“Since the 1960s hundreds of women, usually students or maquiladora workers, have been kidnapped, raped, and murdered in Juárez, Mexico. Many cases go unsolved, the remains often so disfigured that identification is impossible. My installations navigate between Juárez and El Paso, where I grew up, translating my sense of mourning and outrage into political thought and action through visual means. From rubbings of court documents to ceramic body tags, my work aims to redress the obscurity and erasure associated with these crimes.” (Excerpt from Sculpture.org)
In the Community: GSD&M
At the beginning of August, GSD&M stopped by the Serie Project to shoot some video for a special series they’re producing as part of their client newsletter. From agency t-shirts to event posters to client projects for L.L.Bean and eHarmony, the agency has been earning its way into the silk screen scene in Austin.
GSD&M is in the process of filming a behind-the-scenes piece (see image gallery below) on Austin’s silk screening community to feature on their website and share with their employees. They’ve interviewed local silk screen shops including Coronado Studio/Serie Project, Sanctuary, Nakatomi and Industry Print Shop about the process behind the age-old art form.
They’ve also invited some local artists to feature some of their favorite handmade, silk-screened rock posters in a gallery exhibit (September 17 – October 15) in the GSD&M lobby, in honor of the ACL Festival.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Serie Project Contact: Kelly Grajeda, Asst. Director (P) 512.385.3591 | (E) email@example.com
Press Contact: Alexandra M. Landeros, Roots PR (P) 512.517.0394 | (E) firstname.lastname@example.org
Serie Project Reaches Twenty Years and Hopes for a New Beginning
Fundraiser for East Austin Screen Printing Studio on November 17, 2012
AUSTIN, Texas – October 10, 2012 – To ensure that the Serie Project can continue with its mission, the team of board members, staff, and interns are holding a fundraiser at the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center on November 17, 2012. They are actively searching for sponsors and silent auction donors who can help the Serie Project get to a new beginning in 2013 and continue the annual Artist in Residence program into its 20th series.
Because the Serie Project is based in Texas, Cervantes decided to focus on a piece by a famous Tejana, Gloria Anzaldúa, for her serigraph. “I chose to include this portrait of Gloria because she was a groundbreaking thinker of Chicana/lesbian/feminist theory,” explains Cervantes.
Anzaldúa helped promote literature and writing by women of color in the United States, was the co-editor of the book This Bridge Called My Back: Writings by Radical Women of Color, and is best known for her book Borderlands: The New Mestiza = La Frontera. She made major contributions to Chicana feminist and queer theory and was a major inspiration to Cervantes.
“She died in the summer 2004 at her home in Santa Cruz and I wanted to do something to honor all she contributed to the world during her life,” says Cervantes.