Murales Rebeldes

Murals in LA express identity, empower communities, and challenge dominant cultural norms, making them targets of censorship and destruction.    Chicana/o murals in the greater Los Angeles area have been censored through destruction, removal, whitewashing, or neglect.   In celebration of  Hispanic Heritage Month, ¡Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicana/o Murals under Siege,  exhibit will be on display at LA Plaza.

Historia_De_Adentro_2

Los Angeles Chicano Mural History

In 1920 the Mexican government initiated a project for murals.  The influence of the Mexican Mural Movement spread and inspired the Chicano Arts Movement of the 1960s and 1970s.  Through protests and their art, the Chicano movement demanded justice and equality.   Within months of its completing América Tropical on Olvera Street some scenes of artist,  David Alfaro Siqueiros, are considered anti-American and are whitewashed completely within 2 years.

Committed to the sociopolitical activism and ideology of el movimiento, the Los Angeles area experienced a surge of mural production during the 1970s and 1980s making it the mural capital of the world.  The distinction is now held by Philadelphia.
Carrasco_Mural_Complete

Barbara Carrasco’s L.A. History: A Mexican Perspective is displayed at Union Station as part of the Los Angeles Festival, the first and only time the Los Angeles public has seen the mural in its entirety.

East_Los_Streetscapers_P4_13cc

In 1988,   Shell Oil Co. bulldozes East Los Streetscapers’ Filling Up on Ancient Energies without first notifying the artists. The Streetscapers decide to sue Shell Oil Co., which commissioned the mural, for its destruction and won in 1991.   The judge ruled that murals are considered “paintings,” as defined by the California Art Preservation Act (Botello vs Shell Oil).   The ruling sets precedent for the protection of murals under the act.

Ernesto_de_la_Loza 024

In 2000, Ernesto de la Loza’s El Nuevo Mundo: Homage to the Worker is destroyed when the Peerless Hardware Store building on which it is painted is sold to the city to make way for the Edendale branch of the Los Angeles Public Library. The building and the mural are demolished.

 

Ernesto_de_la_Loza_S1_17

Ernesto de la Loza paints Organic/Manmade inside the Los Angeles Public Library Edendale branch, built on the site of his demolished mural El Nuevo Mundo: Homage to the Worker.

Exhibit

¡Murales Rebeldes! L.A. Chicana/o Murals under Siege

Location

LA Plaza de culturas y artes

Dates

September 23, 2017 – February 27, 2018.    

The exhibit examines the controversial legacy of  8 murals created during 1960s and 1970s and eventually destroyed.   Barbara Carrasco’s 16-20 ft x 80 ft mural will be displayed at Union Station next week for the first time in 27 years.   The exhibit explores Latin American and Latino art in dialogue with Los Angeles.  For additional information visit Murales Rebeles

Hispanic Heritage Month: Latino Bigs and Why We Need a Mentor in Our Life #LatinoBigs

I’m very excited to announce that I’m a Big Brothers Big Sisters Latino Recruitment Ambassador.  Latino Bigs, A Latino Recruitment site will launch on Monday, September 14, 2012!  The site encourages Latinos to mentor Latino youths.  Many of us have influencers in our lives.  As children, teens or adults we have been influenced by positive role models outside of our immediate family who saw something in us that we did not see in ourselves.  Teachers, coaches, neighbors, co-workers, clergy and family friends are all people who serve as mentors in informal ways every day.

I’m very fortunate that I have had many positive role models in my life.   In High School my teachers and advisors always challenged me to do better.  Many of them went out of their way to encourage and motivate me as well. I took on many challenging roles as the result of their guidance and support.

While I was in High School I took English and was active in sports.  My English teacher Mr Nicolof always made his class a lot of fun.  He always allowed us to learn English creatively.  We also learned the story of Macbeth by participating in a play for the classroom.  My English teacher was also the football coach and my soccer coach.  He really pushed me to do better in the classroom and as an athlete. After our games he would go out of his way to give everyone on the team a ride home if they needed it, including me.  I believe the continued support and encouragement of my teacher and coach  made me a better person and provided the environment and opportunity to excel.   It also gave me the self confidence to challenge myself when I went to college and inspiration to become a mentor to others today.

High School Trip to Yosemite National Park - 1986

While in High School our Dean of Activities took a group of young  leaders on a one week trip to Yellowstone Park.  It was a trip of a lifetime for many of us.  During the year he acted as a guidance counselor of our young ASB leadership team.

A couple years ago I had the opportunity to catch up with with Mr. Nicoloff and Mr. Cinaris. They are both very proud of the accomplishments I had made in my life.  Last year I  also surprised Mr. Nicoloff in his English classroom.  He is teaching and making a difference in his student’s lives.  It’s one of the reasons I continue to proudly give back to my alma mater.

Event to Unveil $11 Million Dollar Facelift at High School Alma Mater

Not everyone has the opportunity to have mentors in school.  That is why I’m so glad a program such as Latino Bigs exists.

Why Latino Bigs are so Important

About 20% of the children Big Brother Big Sister program serves are Hispanic – a number on the rise. Yet, only 9% of Bigs are Latino.  Also, more than 70% of the children ready and waiting to be matched with a mentor are boys, yet only 3 of 10 volunteer inquiries come from men.   Children need a boost in self-esteem and encouragement to believe in themselves that only an adult can give. Guidance and consejos can come in the form of sharing a personal story about the difficulties of algebra.

Join the Chat

In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month we will also be hosting a Twitter chat on October 10, 2012  to discuss the importance of mentorship among the Latino community.  Please  join Latina Mom Bloggers and Big Brothers and Big Sisters on Wednesday, OCT 10  from 7- 8:00 pm ET for a Twitter CHAT!

There will be lots of information regarding our Latino ‘littles’ and their need for ‘Big’ volunteers! Lets work together to support our youth, our future. Follow the hashtag #LatinoBigs

If not us, who?  If not now, when?  Volunteer Now.

For more more information about volunteering as a ‘”Big” check out www.latinobigs.org or  www.bigbrothersbigsisters.org.

This is part of a supported campaign with Latina Mom Bloggers and Big Brothers Big Sisters.  However, all opinions expressed are my own.

 

Question:  Have you ever mentored a child?  Have you considered mentoring a child?

Roadtrip to Socorro, New Mexico established 1598

On our Latino Heritage trip through New Mexico we decided to make a stop off the beaten path just to explore a city. Definitely found a lot more than what I was expecting in the small town of Socorro, New Mexico — population 10,000.  The town is so small if you don’t purposely look for it you will miss  it.  So thankful we didn’t miss it.

The city is full of Hispanic culture and history.  Many the buildings and business in the small town were established by Hispanics in the 1800s.

San Miguel Church est. 1821

 

San Miguel Church est. 1821

 

The Lupe Torress House est. 1898

I have a lot of appreciate for this small town because they preserved this history and their heritage proudly.

For additional photos and historical facts about Socorro, NM, please go to my FB page HERE.   To plan a visit, go to http://www.socorronm.gov/ .

Disclosure: The Latino Heritage roadtrip was partially funded by American Latino Fund, Verizon Wireless & General Motors.  The vehicle driven during the roadtrip was provided by General Motors.  All opinions and content rights are my own.

Question:   Have you ever planned a roadtrip or a vacation to learn more about your heritage?

 

Roadtrip – White Sands National Monument, New Mexico

My heritage is both Mexican and American with a huge influence on Latino culture due to my upbringing by a Latina Mom in Mexico and border town of San Ysidro, CA.  I embrace my bicultural heritage and through the Latino Heritage road trip discovered Hispanic Heritage across America and influence of Hispanics in each of the places we visited.

I had the pleasure of visiting the White Sands National Monument during our Latino Heritage road trip.   The visitor center and monument is located  on U.S. Highway 70, 52 miles east of Las Cruces, New Mexico.   The white as snow dunes were created over three million years ago and look like a comma from outer space.  The White Sands National National Monument was established in 1933 and is one of the world’s natural wonders.

The visitor facilities has a lot of Hispanic influence and was constructed over a period of six years during the Great Depression.   The building was designed to reflect traditional regional Pueblo architecture in the area.  The architects also relied  on the local craftspeople including Hispanic woodcarvers for some of intricate designs.  I really admired the workmanship, latillas and vigas of this adobe building.

The visitor center also features a fully bilingual state of the art museum exhibits with English and Spanish text.  The exhibits provide the history of the architecture of the adobe visitor center and tell the story of the geology of the world’s largest gypsum dunefield, unique plants and animals.

After checking out the exhibits we headed towards the sand dunes.  I jumped out of the car and started snapping photos and literally dancing in the Sand.  This place is phenomenal! It’s a beautiful site to be on top of a White Sand Dune. You can also walk on the dunes with bare feet, even in the hottest summer months.  The sand feels cool and soft to the touch.  White Sands Monument is also very popular among hikers and photographers nationwide.

I also had the opportunity to interview two National Park Service Rangers during our visit as well who shared tips for visiting the glistening White Sands National Monument.

 


If you’re planning a recreational or educational trip to New Mexico head on over to the White Sands National Monument, bring a camera and stay awhile.  Some of the best Park Ranger guided events are scheduled around sun down. We’re definitely coming back! Plan your trip here: http://www.nps.gov/whsa

Disclosure: The Latino Heritage roadtrip was partially funded by American Latino FundVerizon Wireless & General Motors.  The vehicle driven during the roadtrip was provided by General Motors.  All opinions and content rights are my own.

Question:  Did you know that the National Parks have online resources to help you discover historical sites in your local city or nationwide? Have you ever planned a roadtrip or a vacation to learn more about your heritage?

Roadtrip – Casa Grande Ruins National Monument – Coolidge, Arizona

Our Latino Heritage road trip continued towards the Southwest to Coolidge, Arizona.  We had the opportunity to obtain a guided  tour of the Casa Grande Ruins National Monument with the National Park Service Superintendent, Karl Cordova.  His staff is  dedicated to conserving, preserving, and providing an atmosphere for recreation at the Casa Grande Ruins.  They also reach out to the local community and visit local schools.

The Casa Grande Monument is one of the largest prehistoric structures ever built in North America. It is the first prehistoric and cultural site in the United States.   The four story structure was built around 1300 and is located about an hour drive from Phoenix, AZ and Tuscon, AZ.  The protected area spans about 472.5 acres.  It’s purpose remains a mystery.

 

The area is also home to the largest cactus in the United States, the Saguaro cactus.  A mature Saguaro cactus is about 40-50 feet tall, 125 years old and weighs about 6 tons.   I felt so small next to the Saguaro cactus.  The cactus was a source of food and the wood was used to create tools.

As I walked towards the structure it’s very hard to imagine that a structure made out of sand, calcium carbonate & clay is still standing after over 650 years.  We learned that the area also didn’t have any water which must have made it a challenge to obtain and transport water during the period.  The ancient Sonoran people did all their building without the basic tools similar to what we use today.  Their basic tools were their hands, a digging stick and a planting stick.  It’s amazing how much they accomplished.  It’s obvious that the Sonoran desert people were very resourceful and innovative.

In speaking with the Superindendent, he advised that Archeologists discovered evidence that the ancient Sonoran Desert people who built the Casa Grande also developed wide-scale irrigation farming and extensive trade connections which lasted over a thousand years until about 1450 C.E.

The next time you’re near Tucson or Phoenix, Arizona consider going to the Casa Grande and explore the history.   It will be an educational opportunity for the entire family.   To discover our shared heritage at National Park Services find out what is happening in your local community or order a map of National Park Museums in the Southwest and other regions at http://www.nps.gov/history/nr/travel/orderform.htm and plan your next roadtrip.


 

The #LatinoHeritage roadtrip celebrates the contributions of American Latinos throughout the national park and historic places across the country.  For additional information regarding the Casa Grande Ruins, please visit http://www.nps.gov/cagr.  For additional information regarding the American Latino Heritage programs,  check www.alhf.org and Support the American Latino Heritage Fund.  For live tweets, please follow the conversation on Twitter by checking the #LatinoHeritage hashtag on Twitter.

Disclosure: The Latino Heritage roadtrip was partially funded by American Latino Fund, Verizon Wireless & General Motors.  The vehicle driven during the roadtrip was provided by General Motors.  All opinions and content rights are my own.

Question:  Did you know that the National Park Service is honored to connect with people in local communities?   Have you visited any local National Parks are near your community?  What is your favorite local National Park to visit?

Road Trip: Arizona and Vicious Dust Storms

We continued the Latino Heritage Roadtrip towards Arizona as soon as we finished our trip to San Diego Old Town & Old Point Loma Light House.  It was a very long day on the road, approximately 409 miles.  Not many scenic stops, routes or historical sites on our trip towards Scottsdale, Arizona.  However, the landscape was beautiful.

 

After a short nap, I woke up and noticed gloom in the sky and a very dark cloud in the horizon. I asked my husband what that was — it looks like a huge cloud of rain. However, at that exact moment I noticed it was far away from us. It looked like we were going in the opposite direction of the huge dark cloud. However, within a couple of minutes it looked like we were headed straight into it.

 

The dust storm was incredibly strong and the winds were powerful. There were moments when we had zero visibility, but we got us through it safely, in part because of the vehicle we were driving, GMC Terrain.  We felt very safe in the crossover.

According to the Arizona Department of Transportation, here are the steps to safely handle dust storms:

  • Avoid driving into or through a dust storm
  • Do not wait until poor visibility makes it difficult to safely pull off the roadway —do it as soon as possible. Completely exit the highway if you can.
  • If you encounter a dust storm, check traffic immediately around your vehicle (front, back and to the side) and begin slowing down.
  • Do not stop in a travel lane or in the emergency lane; look for a safe place to pull completely off the paved portion of the roadway.
  • Stop the vehicle in a position ensuring it is a safe distance from the main roadway and away from where other vehicles may travel.
  • Turn off all vehicle lights, including your emergency flashers.
  • Set your emergency brake and take your foot off the brake.
  • Stay in the vehicle with your seatbelts buckled and wait for the storm to pass.
  • Drivers of high-profile vehicles should be especially aware of changing weather conditions and travel at reduced speeds.
  • A driver’s alertness and safe driving ability is still the number one factor to prevent crashes.

The Latino Heritage Roadtrip aims to document  the his­tory of the nation through four regional road trips span­ning thou­sands of miles in the north­east, south­east, south­west and mid­west. The American Latino Fund celebrates the contributions of American Latinos throughout the national park and historic places across the country.  Check www.alhf.org to learn more about the programs and Support the American Latino Heritage Fund.

 

Please join me and my fellow road trip colleagues as we go on an adventure of a lifetime.  For live tweets, please follow the conversation on Twitter by checking the #LatinoHeritage hashtag.  Please check back later for additional photos.

The vehi­cle being dri­ven on this road trip is pro­vided by Gen­eral Motors. Please fol­low @GM_diversity on Twitter.

Question:  Have you ever encountered severe weather conditions on a roadtrip?  How did you handle it?  What additional tips would you provide for handling severe weather?

 

Roadtrip to Cabrillo National Monument, Old Point Loma Lighthouse and Old Town San Diego California

We’ve started our American Latino Heritage roadtrip of the Southwest with stops in San Diego, Arizona, New Mexico & Nevada. We’re visiting historic sites protected by the National Park Service that honor the contributions of Latinos throughout American history.  As I prepared for the trip I identified a number of historical sites in my surrounding areas, especially in my home town of San Diego.   I never realized these treasures existed in my back yard.

Being raised my a single mom in Mexico and then in Calfornia didn’t give my mother many opportunities to take us on field trips, other than visiting relatives in Mexico.  As I’ve become an adult and raise children of my own, staying connected to my heritage is something that is very important.  This road trip has been a perfect opportunity to connect with my Hispanic Heritage.

On day one we encountered the beauty of historical sites in San Diego, including the Cabrillo National monument, Old Point Loma lighthouse and historic Old Town San Diego.

In 1542, Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo stepped into history as the first European to set foot on what is now the West Coast of the United States. A monument was buit on a hilltop where it is believed he landed.  We watched the story of the 16th century exploration and walked towards the grounds of the monument. The monument is also home to one of the most breathtaking views of San Diego.


We also visited the lighthouse. This was my husband’s first time at the Cabrillo Monument. It was exciting to see him explore the surroundings.  The lighthouse is very small.  The people that lived in it were very resourceful with space.  Walking around the lighthouse I couldn’t help to think whether the residents were lonely on top of the hilltop.

Cabrillo National Monument features a 16th century Spanish History museum where you can learn about the Spanish explorations. The lighthouse museum also highlights life at the Lighthouse and the history of the longest standing Lighthouse keeper family, the Israels Lighthouse keepers who lived and worked at the old Point Loma lighthouse for 18 years.

 

 

 

 

We traveled to the heart of the city of San Diego to old town and also saw the very first elementary school that was opened in San Diego and La Casa de Estudillo.  I’m looking forward to sharing more photos on the epic home on my Facebook page.

For additional information about Cabrillo National Monument visit the National Parks Services Cabrillo National monument page or Old Point Loma page.

The American Latino Fund celebrates the contributions of American Latinos throughout the national park and historic places across the country.  Check www.alhf.org to learn more about the programs and Support the American Latino Heritage Fund.

Please join me and my colleagues as we go on an adventure of a lifetime.  For live tweets, please follow the conversation on Twitter by checking the #LatinoHeritage hashtag.  Please check back later for additional photos.

Question:  Have you ever gone on a roadtrip to a National Park or historical site?  What park did you visit? 

 

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: