Photo courtesy of Centro
"Challenges and portraits": The translation of the upcoming exhibition's name, Retos y Retratos, speaks to its theme. Presented by Crosstown Arts and Centro Cultural Latino de Memphis, the show — a collection of portraits of Latino/a artists and samples of their work — "strives to give a voice to the struggles, triumphs, and experiences of this diverse community of artists."
Portraits of 25 Latino and Latina artists — including Agustín Diaz, Lucero Soto, Marcela Pinilla, Jessica Cervantes, Luz Delia Gomez, and others — will be on display, and a video showcasing a selection of their work will be shown as part of the exhibition. The highlighted artists come from a variety of cultural and artistic backgrounds, their work a mixture of visual art, sculpture, dance, and more.
In a press release statement, Margarita Sandino of Centro Cultural said the show would be "more about the artists than the art." For the past five years, Centro has promoted Memphis' Latino/a artists, and this show presents a compilation of those they've worked with through the years. "We want to give the artists a voice and a chance to share their experiences,” Sandino said.
One of those artists is Vanessa Gonzalez, a Mexican-American print-maker who was born in the U.S. but raised in Mexico. She moved to Memphis with her family six years ago.
In an artist statement, Gonzalez writes: “The time spent in two disparate cultures has led me to constantly question everything about who I am in the world. I explore my sense of cultural dislocation as I continue to question my identity as a Mexican or as a Mexican-American."
The Retos y Retratos opening reception will be held November 18th from 6 to 9 p.m. in the Crosstown Arts Gallery (422 N. Cleveland). The show runs through December 4th.