Internationally renowned artists visit Minneapolis, focus on reviving and enriching Mexican traditional art forms
In celebration of Latinx Heritage Month, the City of Minneapolis Office of Arts, Culture & the Creative Economy and the University of Minnesota’s Weisman Art Museum will host a Mexican Folks Arts Residency to strengthen and elevate the presence of and access to Mexican traditional art forms in Minneapolis. Jacobo and María Ángeles, two national treasures from San Martín Tilcajete, Oaxaca, Mexico, are the selected artists who will pass down cultural knowledge to the local community during their residency Sept. 26-Oct. 10.
In line with the City’s goals to address racial disparities, the effort invests in mentoring local Latinx artists and reconnecting Mexican immigrants to their traditions and cultural heritage. Jacobo and María Ángeles will train four Minneapolis-based Latinx artists in particular types of ancestral art forms practiced in México. Their residency will involve focused sessions with the following Minneapolis-Latinx artists: Gustavo Lira Garcia, Pablo Helm-Hernandez, Alondra Garza and Gustavo Boada. A workshop for Spanish speaking families and a presentation at select Minneapolis Public Schools are also planned for the artists to engage with local communities.
The two master artists have built an international following for their dedicated ability to recuperate Mexican Indigenous cultural practices. Their work is embodied by their creation of intricately carved wooden figures and masks referred to as “tonas” or “nahuales,” which are painted with colors derived from organic and natural pigments made in Oaxaca.
Through these various convenings and trainings, the Mexico in Minneapolis Folk Arts Residency seeks to connect members of the Mexican-American diaspora to a richer sense of their cultural skills and identity as practiced through folk art traditions.
The public is invited to meet Jacobo and María Ángeles at a free, welcoming reception with food and beverages provided at the Midtown Global Market, 920 E. Lake St., 5-7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 1 with a program at 6 p.m. RSVP here by Sept. 28.
A second public event will be held in partnership with the ninth annual Cine Latino Film Festival at the St. Anthony Main Theater at 3:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 9. This event features the U.S. premiere of FINLANDIA, a film by Horacio Alcalá. This is a tale of memory, mysticism and the master creativity of the Muxe (“moo-shay”), considered a third gender from the town of Juchitán de Zaragoza in the southeastern state of Oaxaca, Mexico. The feature will be followed by a short film about Jacobo and María and a panel discussion with the artists and FINLANDIA musician Azul Barrientos, and moderated by Hebe Tabachnik. A small reception will follow the screening.
Tickets to this event are $10 and will be available Sept. 23 on the Cine Latino website.
All events will follow Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 safety protocols.
Funding for this activity is provided by the Minnesota State Arts Board, the Graves Foundation and the City of Minneapolis.
Via Arts, Culture & the Creative Economy | City of Minneapolis