March 2019 - October 2019
The Hispanic Latino Heritage Project is a community arts project addressing identity and gentrification in the low income, Hispanic neighborhood of Park East, Sarasota, Florida. The aim of this project is to inspire the Park East neighborhood, to express cultural pride and Sarasota belonging by creating and exhibiting six projects. The six projects are: community meetings, welcome signs into the neighborhood, a parade, a sculptural art project, a gallery exhibition and Hispanic Latino Festival.
Truly Valued: Who Am I? was a community engaged art project carried out throughout a two-month period. The project included eight girls: Yahnara Hinds, Kei’myha Hinds, Tkyha Hinds, Shyra X. Calhoun, Jordyn Simon, Ariel Samedi, Anastasia Samedi, Zaire Kekahuna Samedi. Each girl was between the age of thirteen to sixteen from the Sarasota / Bradenton area who worked together to create art around the topics of confidence and identity.
Artist and gallery founder, Marianne Chapel and the Executive Director of the nonprofit Truly Valued, Shavonne Simon, collaborated to provide a temporary art studio workshop for the teenage girls. The artworks included large two and three-dimensional pieces, made independently by each girl, with no instruction, and a large collaborative sculptural piece made by Chapel and all eight girls together.
I organized an open call to the Sarasota artist community requesting submissions to the exhibition, Le Salon Tout Inclus (The All-Inclusive Exhibition) to demonstrate inclusivity and acceptance in the art world. There was no submission fee or any requirements, all work was accepted. The process of collecting and hanging the artwork, with a team of artists, was one collaborative effort. Our goal was to treat the entire system of distinctly individual artworks as one collective work therefore, Le Salon Tout Inclus was hung as one installation piece. Through this curative process, the community aspect of the show was emphasized, changing the way the viewer experienced the work. They initially perceived the sixty-six pieces as one artwork and after looking intently, began to discover the unique personalities within. During the exhibition, I focused on human interaction and social discourse. I provided the audience with a program map to engage beyond a mere onlooker and become a participant. The activity engaging the community became a type of performative aesthetic in itself. The social interaction component created intimacy and completed the community aspect of the project. Le Salon Tout Inclus described one complete unified community, rather than one of separate individual artists.
John Erwin Dillard, Marie Yoho Dorsey, Joseph Arnegger, Sorcha Augustine, Nancy Barrie, Nathan Beard, Catherine Bergmann, Nat Borges, Elly Bovarnick, Mooshi Chapel, Marianne Chapel, Eli Jacob Clark Kramer, Dolores Coe, Michael Crabb, Brandy Eiger, Snousha Gaude, Zack Gilliland, Nancy Goff, Sheryl Haler, Susan Hess, Dee Hood, Grace Howl, Patty Hughes, Dustin Juengel, Cadie Junker, Barbara Junker, Kendal Kiner, Carol Lewis, Leonard Maffet, Anastasia Maracle, Ellen Mason, Laurie Maves, Clifford McDonald, Jana Millstone, Linda Mosca, Ian North, Pamela Olin, Meg Peirce, Evelyn Peters, Sally Pettibon, Jack Quack, Diane Raddel, Andrea Dasha Reich, Chuck Reich, Valerie Roberts, Patricia Rockwood, Melissa Ryan, Claudia Ryan, Chris Schumaker, Bianca Selket, Jack Shapiro, Rebecca Skelton, Tom Stephens, Rob Tarbell, Jon G Terhune, Sami ThrashLife, Jillian Mae Vida Nova, Joe Walles, Shannon Summer Warren, Lee West, Anita Wexler, Kathy Wright, Jahfre Colbert.
A Special thanks to Joseph Arnegger, Barbara Junker, Claudia Ryan, and Tom Stephens for donating the sale of their artworks to the SPAACES project; to Ann Albritton & Laine Nixon for your financial support; and to Zack Gilliland for helping with the curation of hanging the artworks.