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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

CURRENT JAMS


I'm not a big fan of Top 40 hits and that kinda shit, but once in a while there's a few jams that just make me wanna hit replay over and over again, make me feel all sexy and cute, and then I find myself dancing in my room, getting ready to go out... These are the songs I'm currently jamming to. Don't judge me ayyy!!!





Yes, Kanye West comes off as an arrogant asshole, but I can't deny his genius mind and the great music he produces... plus if I was that famous I would go crazy too. His video "Runaway" is pretty much epic, and so beautifully made, if you haven't see it I suggest you watch the whole thing... Trip out ayyyy!!!

CHOLA JAPONESA


Meet Mona aka Sad Girl, La Chola Japonesa!!! I ran into her music some time ago while doing some research on the fast growing Lowrider scene in Japan. Anyway, I'm not sure how I completely feel about her yet, but its how they say..."imitation is the highest form of flattery" and this is what I say, "Always imitated never duplicated!!!" c/s




Okay, now at first I didn't know how I felt about Mona doing a cover of Selena's "Dreaming of You" song... The first thoughts that came to my mind where: Whaaaat?!!! WTF!!! Ohhh Hellz No!!! Nobody can replace Selena... She belong to us!!! hahaha that kinda shit you know. But then I calmed down and though about this. She's not the only one that has done a cover of a Selena song, so why am I tripping? Is it because she's Japanese and not Latina? Maybe a little, but thats not really it. Is it because I'm extremely sensitive and overprotective when it come to Selena? Yeah Duh... but why be a hater if I don't have to be, right? Selena has fans all over the planet, and she's just trying to honor her memory with this homage, and I ain't mad at her for that. Mona seems to be really down with the Brown and if she wants to show her love for our beloved Selena then who am I to judge... knock yourself out Sad Girl!!!


Shout out to all the Hella Breezys' fans out there in Japan... Stay Brown Homies!!!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

WHITTIER BLVD. CRUISING




Artwork (above) by mi novio El Angel...
Check out more arte and some firme rolas on his blog www.puesorale.blogspot.com

A BARRIO WEDDING





Artwork (above) by my boo El Angel... check out his blog www.puesorale.blogspot.com

EAST L.A. GANGS CIRCA 1978






BATO LOCO!
By: Ramon Del Castillo


Bato Loco, con su cabeza
llena de mota,
lighting the paths into los barrios
dark with fear.
Can you hear as you sit
idly
in classrooms where
the silence of indoctrination
subtly
grabs you and makes
a believer of false notions
of inferiority
and passes judgement
about your ancestors' feathers.

Bato Loco! Your path
they tell you
is predetermined. Filled
with solemn images
where you stand behind bars
while your intestines,
filled with crack,
eat away
at your conscience
laying bare on the front streets
de sus propios barrios,
filled with homeboys, pop tarts,
gruesome realities,
nightmares caused by the ingestion
of filthy needles
shot into arms full of tattoos.

Bato Loco! Take off that handkerchief
from around your head,
and wipe away la sangre
of a thousand years of bloodshed
y miseria
draped in an idolatrous symbol
at a time when sus carnales
estaban cantando sweet melodies
into las ears
of las rucas
about dreams that have yet
to come true.

Bato Loco! Escape from
the fires of el infierno
scorching your alma
frying you like a crispy critter
so you can become
la avena for the breakfast
of the champions of una sociedad
who eventually takes everything
you are worth
and treats it like a commodity
for sale on the common market.

Bato Loco! Wake up.
Anachronism is not your dessert.
Pan dulce y chocolate
sounds better! No?
Levantate, bato loco, levantate
and begin to see the world around you.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

GALERIA DE LA RAZA 40TH ANNIVERSARY GALA



Last Sunday I had the honor to attend the 40th Anniversary Gala for Galeria de la Raza at Bravo Theater en La Mission SF... it was one of the best nights I've had in a very, very long time to say the least...


I finally got to see Guillermo Gomez Peña (above) perform, and he officially blew me away! He is the artistic director of La Pocha Nostra, and his performance piece was so witty, clever, politically charged, and extremely hilarious... I can't wait to collaborate with him, it's gonna be off the hook! Here is a tiny taste of his work...



One of the nights honorees was my homie Rene Yañez (above) ... he is one of the founders of Galeria de la Raza from back in the 70's, and has been a fixture in the Bay Areas' art scene for some time now. A wonderful human being, and an incredible artist and curator, he is so deserving of the recognition and we are all very proud and happy for him. Congratulation Rene, and thank you for all you have done for the community!!!


My homie Pablo Cristi (above), myself, and his fancy mustachio!!!


Got to see my homies Melanie Cervantes (above) and Jesus Barraza (below) from Dignidad Rebelde... always a pleasure to see you both!!!




Miss Ana Teresa Fernandez, Raquel de Anda a.k.a. "Rocky" and I... Anna is an amazingly talented artist, and Raquel is leaving Galeria after 6 years of curating... wishing them both great luck with any and all future projects and journeys!!!


When I heard that Sandra Cisneros would be one of the honorees of the night I knew I couldn't miss out on the chance to meet her. She is by far one of my favorite Chicana authors EVER!!! I have been a fan of hers since I read The House on Mango Street in the 6th grade... I then moved on to reading her poetry and really fell in love with her work, I especially love her poetry book Loose Women. She has been an inspiration, a role model, and a teacher to me... and now I get to meet her, and have her sign my book? Hellz Yeah!!!!!



and we soon became homegirls... well not really, but at least it looks like we did hahaha, I was so freaking star struck I was speechless. How do I tell someone I've never meet that I love them? that her words have inspired me to be a strong, intelligent, independent woman?... well, I don't tell her this, but just hope that she can see it in my eyes. I'm pretty sure she gets this type of reaction all the time. Definitely one of the highlights of my life... and one more thing to scratch off my bucket list!!!


Got to see Miss Jenny Prieto a.k.a. "La Adelita Pata de Perro"(far left) too that night, she's so damn sweet! Look at us, soooo happy!!! hahaha


After the gala I headed down the street to Galeria de la Raza for their monthly literary "Lunada"... this time the special guest was my homegirl Felicia "Fe" Montes, who came all the way from East L.A. to delight us with her powerful words and song... she is hella tight... a poet, activist, community organizer, artist, and crafty lady, she is definitely a force to be reckoned with. Also got to see my pretty friend Tina... a great end to a beautiful night full of friends, art, and lots of love. And now I leave you with a video poem by La Fe... Watcha!!!


Oh, one more thing... I would like to give my homeboy Rio Yañez a shout out for being my date for the evening, and for being my private photographer (hence his absence from photos of that evening)... I had a blast, so Gracias Amigo!!!

TINTA


I got some new tinta last weekend by my homie Mike Giant. I always have a dope time chillin with him, and he always drops mad knowledge on us youngsters and I can definitely appreciate that, I leave feeling a little bit smarter, a little more inked, and wayyyy too high! Gracias Mike!!!






Thursday, November 18, 2010

THE HARVEST


My homie told me about this documentary a few weeks ago, so I checked out the trailer (below) and I can't even begin to express how sad it made me feel. Being from Califas, an agricultural state, and growing up as a morrita in Oxnard, a city famous for it's strawberry fields I was able to see how the agricultural business runs, and let me tell you, it's not pretty!!! My parents and neighbors all worked the fields, it would break my heart to see them all come home covered in mud up to their knees, their hands all cut up, and tired off working in the sun all day. So to see the stories of children having to put their dreams on hold to provide for their family is something a child should never have to do. I can't understand why our government lets this happen, it's child labor, and it's not right. I have mad respect for these young kids, and for all farmworkers... they do the jobs that no one else wants to do, and they provide us with the food we eat on a daily, with out them this country would be shit. So please support this documentary and spread the word. Thank you Amigos!!!


Over 500,000 children labor in agriculture in the U.S., The Harvest tells the stories of five of these children from Texas, Florida, California, Minnesota and North Dakota. Produced and Directed by filmmaker Robin Romano in association with Shine Global. This is the trailer for a feature length documentary to be released in 2010.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

AMATE



Amate is back for it's 9th year... Come support my beautiful strong hermanas of the Bay Area on Friday Dec.3rd, from 7-9pm at Intersection for the Arts, here in San Francisco. This is a wonderful event, full of positive, creative, and powerful mujeres painting their stories and sharing them with us... you don't wanna miss this!!!



From Intersection of the Arts website:

Our exploration of the sights and sounds of the Mission begins this December. Join us for a standout spoken word event that has showcased accomplished poets and performers eight years and counting. The tradition continues as Amate spreads its wings and brings the show down Mission Street to Intersection 5M. Founder and organizer Leticia Hernandez presents a ninth year of the finest women's poetry, performance, and song. The all-star lineup of artists includes Meldy Hernandez,Natalia Vigil, Reina prado, and Jewelle Gomez. DJ Special K graces the night with her turntables and local artisans will sell their one of kind wares. Special guests, Las Bomberas de la Bahia will close the evening Puerto Rican style with Bomba music and dance. This year we'll give extra love to the Mission with a multimedia tribute to Mission District Art by Amanda Lopez, Michelle Gutierrez and master muralist Juana Alicia.


ARTISTS

Juana Alicia is a muralist, printmaker, educator, activist and painter who loves to draw. She has been teaching for thirty years, working in many areas of education, from community organizing to migrant and bilingual education to arts education, from kindergarten to graduate school levels. Currently she is full-time faculty at Berkeley City College, where she directs a public art program called True Colors.

Bomberas de la Bahia, an ensemble of Bay Area artists, educators, and activists is dedicated to continuing to maintain Bomba, Puerto Rico's oldest African influenced musical tradition, a living cultural art form; and contribute to growing the tradition by highlighting the important role women play in supporting our communities. By educating through both performance, workshops, and in community contexts as well as through collaboration with other Bomba practitioners and mentors from Puerto Rico and the Diaspora, Las Bomberas del la Bahia strive to continue to be in the practice of honoring this tradition in the Bay Area. Las Bomberas de la Bahia have performed throughout the Bay Area for educational institutions, cultural centers, and cultural festivals and in two commissioned original works, La Bomba es Nuestra (La Pena Cultural Center, April 2007) and Cimarronaje (Laney College, July 2008).

Jewelle Gomez is the author of seven books including the double Lambda Literary Award-winning lesbian vampire novel, THE GILDA STORIES which has been in print for almost 20 years. Her fiction, non-fiction and poetry are included in over one hundred anthologies. She has written essays, literary and film criticism for numerous publications including ‘The Village Voice,' MS Magazine,' ‘The Advocate, ‘The San Francisco Chronicle,' and ‘Black Scholar.' She's taught creative writing and popular culture in campuses across the country and at Intersection for the Arts. She is currently director of grants for Horizons, the oldest queer foundation in the US and serves as President of the San Francisco Public Library Commission. She recently finished her second novel, TELEVISED; and a play about James Baldwin, which will be produced next fall at New Conservatory Theatre.

www.jewellegomez.com
www.redroom.com
www.hillgirlz.com
www.epochalips.com

Michelle Gutierrez is a photographer based in San Francisco. She has covered various topics in Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Venezuela, and the US. When living in South America she worked on long-term projects about children, women, indigenous communities, culture, and those affected by exploitation of their land. Home in San Francisco at the moment with those close to her heart, she is working again with independent community journalism, women, children, culture, and against discrimination of any type. She is grateful to be turning her attention these days towards teaching photography and asking her students to express their identities and culture. www.culturalfotografia.com

Writer and educator, Leticia Hernández, has presented her music and teatro-infused poetry throughout the country and in El Salvador for over a decade. Her writing has appeared in newspapers, anthologies and literary journals, some of which include, Street Art San Francisco, and Latino Literature Today. Razor Edges of my Tongue, her chapbook of poetry, was published by Calaca Press in 2002. She has taught literature, creative writing, and worked with youth and community-based organizations throughout California. A Mission resident of fifteen years, she is currently completing a poetry manuscript and spoken word c.d. entitled Mucha Muchacha, Too Much Girl, funded by a San Francisco Arts Commission Individual Artist Grant. In 2001, she began organizing and hosting Pinta tu Propio Mundo an annual women's poetry, performance, and art event. Under its new name, Amate: Women Painting Stories, this series is now part of the Intersection for the Arts Incubator Program. For more info about Leticia and her work visit www.ciguanabaink.com

Meldy Hernandez, BSN, MPH is a multidisciplinary public health artist/nurse who believes in the power of stories to promote health. Utilizing over twelve years of global experience in nursing and public health along with her lifelong passion for dance, theater, and poetry, she strives to promote health through the arts. Her energetic dance and poetry infused work has been performed in Spain, West Africa, and Bay Area community theaters including the Marsh, Counterpulse, Stage Werx, the Thick House, and Off-Market Theater. Meldy's solo-shows, "Nursing in Timbuktu" & "Bathala Na!," showcase her adventures as an RN in Africa and the stories of mothers, daughters, breast cancer and the drums of hope. Ms. Hernandez regularly presents at health conferences and has assisted in teaching a number of university courses including Women's Health, Global Health, Promoting Positive Health, storytelling, and community building workshops. She received her Bachelors of Science in Nursing with a Women's Studies focus from Seattle University and Master of Public Health in Health Education from San Francisco State University. Her unique solo performance artistic style has been most influenced by her studies with David Ford and Anthem Salgado.

Amanda Lopez was born and raised in Sacramento, California under the watchful eye of her parents and paintings of La Virgen de Guadalupe. Her father lent her a camera at the age of 17, and photography soon became her savior. She studied art at San Francisco State University, and continued to shoot around the Bay Area and beyond. Whether she's photographing Latina homegirls, street musicians in the Mission District or members of her family, Lopez's camera eye looks for a balance of beauty, strength and urban tenacity. Her work has been published in Vibe, XXL, Essence, XLR8R, Hamburger Eyes, Roger Gastman's "Street World" and Upper Playground "Backyard Shake Down." Lopez continues to be influenced by her Latina background and the energy of American cities. She believes La Virgen de Guadalupe has guided her well.

amandalopezphoto.com
amandalopezphoto.blogspot.com

Reina alejandra prado's performances and poetry challenge taboos imposed on Latinas by delving into the realm of the erotic affirming that sexesmiotroerórtico (sex is my other erotic). In August, she completed a Hothouse Residency through UCLA's World Arts & Culture Program to continue work on her solo performance Whipped! Prado has performed to audiences throughout the United States and internationally in Scotland, Mexico and Cuba. She is also a founding member of The NeoSpinsters and is currently collaborating with Words with a Purpose. You may contact her for readings and performances via her website: www.santaperversa.com

DJ Special K. is a Bay Area DJ and Visual Artist. She is known for moving dance floors with her stylistic fusion of Hip Hop, Latin, Brazilian, Funk, Soul, Reggae, Afro-beat and 80's Freestyle.

Natalia M. Vigil was born and raised in the Bay Area, one of five sisters. She finds wonder in the resiliency and complexity of friends/family/individuals around her and aims to capture this in her writing. She marvels at the forms a story can take; identity poem, myth, letter and more. Her collaborative work has appeared in Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts' Día de los Muertos show and San Francisco's Queer Arts Festival. She was a proud participant of the Voices of Our Nations (VONA) Writing Workshop and Intersection for Arts Intergenerational Writer's Lab 2010. She received an MFA in Creative Writing from Mills College, but began her writing career in first grade when she wrote the poem, "You Make Me Glitter Up", for her teacher Mrs. Kahn.

VENDORS

Itzpapalotl is a clothing line made for a warrior woman. She dresses to accentuate her curves and the brownness of her skin. She mixes old huipiles with jeans and old Mexican jewelry or a Guatemalan skirt with a small top and jean jacket. This woman is fighting injustice by day and a danzante by night. Itzpapalotl is a line that appeals to professional freedom fighting women. She needs her garments to be comfortable and versatile. These are garments that compliment this woman's all around beauty, indiviuality and fighting spirit. Itzpapalotl Clothing is now available for our fighting brothers also. Itzpapalotl is for people who fight this struggle everyday. http://itzpapalotlclothing.blogspot.com/

Rachel-Anne Palacios is part of the Oakland Artisan Marketplace and sells her work at the Jack London Square farmer's market on Sundays. Her booth, called Devika's Palacio (Little Goddess's Palace) offers handcrafted necklaces, earrings, bracelets, decoupaged and embellished light-switch covers, picture frames, magnets, belt buckles, and nichos (shrines or spirit houses). She is of Mexican, Peruvian and El Salvadorean descent. Being born in the U.S. has given her a serious motivation to reconnect with her ancestral roots through dance, art and food and learn about other cultures in the process. A self-taught, multicultural artist her pieces reflect the respect she has for culture, religion, traditional values, elders, and the cycle of life and death. http://devikaspalacio.ning.com/

La LadyCakes is sugar and spice and everything nice...a High-Femme QSMOC (Queer Single Mother of Color) of two little rambunctious nene's, Theory- Enthusiast, Passionate baker/lover/mother/youth-worker/student who *hearts* making tummies smile and swoon.

Martha Rodriguez is an urban folk artist with a background working in social welfare and education. Attending college during the student movements of the 1970's, she grew intimately connected to the pride and rich history of her Chicano / Mexicano ancestry. She is a self taught painter and mixed media artist, and also works in installation and jewelry design. With roots forever planted in her beloved Mexico, she also cites her life as a native Californian, urban dweller, mother, wife, child of 60's pop as influences in her work.

http://www.missionartistsunited.org/artists/estudiomartita.http://www.etsy.com/shop/estudiomartita


LOCATION

Intersection for the Arts
925 Mission Street
San Francisco, CA 94103


PACHUCA COSMETICS


I've known of
Pachuca Cosmetics for a little while now and have been wanting to add some to my large collection of make-up... I'm always down to support my fellow Chicanas who work hard, are creative, and follow their dreams. So I was hella excited when they came out with their "Hola Chola" collection... I feel like she created this with me in mind, maybe, maybe not but it definitely makes me feel that way, and that means she knows exactly who her client base is and what they need.
Check it out ayyy!!!


HOLA CHOLA PALETTE: 12 mineral shadows, 8 lipsticks, 4 blushes...
See the Possibilities with 4 looks Inspired by Pachuca Street Slang: POWERFUL WORDS. POWERFUL WOMEN.
Ruca, Loca, Firme, Suave

What Chola Are YOU???





Follow Pachuca Cosmetics on Facebook HERE!

Pachuca Cosmetics ad Campaign was a collaboration between
MICHELLE ALEXANDRA PHOTOGRAPHY.
MAKEUP ARTIST DIANA CORTEZ AND PACHUCA COSMETICS.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

ADAN HERNANDEZ


Adan Hernandez is hands down one of my favorite artist of all times, and definitely a Chicano Art Icon fo sho!!! You've most likely seen some of his work in the film
"Blood In Blood Out" or if you were lucky enough to catch Cheech Marin's Chicano Visions American Painters on the Verge art exhibit tour witch I got to view at the DeYoung Museum here in SF a few years back. Check out this video trailer about Adan's work... Orale, Chicano U-turn!!!







Monday, November 8, 2010

GANAS 20/20


This Saturday Nov.13th @ 7pm at White Walls Gallery in SF, the homie Ernesto Yerena is having his first ever Bay Area Solo Show... this young artist has such a bright, bright future ahead of him, I'm looking forward to see how is art grows and matures into some firme Chicano masterpieces!!!


Ernesto worked with Shepard Fairey as an apprentice for a few years (not sure if he still does), and you can definitely see the influence in his work... but then Ernesto used what he learned from Shepard and took it to the next level... I Hella love his work!!!

Also, this Saturday before the opening reception there will be an artist panel discussion featuring: Ernesto Yerena, Melanie Cervantes y Jesus Barraza from Dignidad Rebelde... same spot, White Walls Gallery at 3pm. If you enjoy political art with messages of social justice then these are the peeps you wanna meet... I feel super blessed to know them and have them as homies, they're super inspirational!!!


Hope you can come out an support the homies Ernesto, Melanie, and Jesus ... You can't miss this show and artist discussion, it's gonna be off the hook!!!

SKATE NIGHT


Next week!!! Check out Mike Giant's "The Skull Press" monthly party... prints of the photo shoot we worked on will be showing, also a zine release, and debut of decks by Nick Teodori... See you there!!!


Monday, November 1, 2010

QUE VIVAN LOS GIGANTES



CONGRATULATIONS TO THE SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS!!!
WORLD SERIES CHAMPIONS FACK YEAH!!!

The city went hella cray cray for Los Gigantes, it was dressed in orange y black, and it came together like I've never seen it before...

La Mission got especially hyphy...

Okay, maybe that got a lil outta hand... Trucha con la carucha!!!