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CONTACT: Jennifer Bridges, Gallery Administrator
6 East Broad Street, Richmond, VA 23220
Phone: 804.782.8672 / Fax: 804.782.9880
Email: artspacegallery@worldnet.att.net
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April 3, 2003

CELEBRACIÓN DE LAS ARTES LATINAS
May 2- June 1, 2003

Arnulfo MendozaRichmond, VA -- In May, Artspace Gallery is featuring a month long "celebración" of the variety and excitement of Latin American art and performance. Organized by Henrietta Near, one of the founders of Artspace, the exhibitions and performances seek to capsule the travels/ immigration of different native cultures throughout the Americas (particularly to North America) and the travels of spiritual beliefs within these Native (and Latin) American cultures. The impetus for the event started in January 2001 when Near visited Oaxaca, Mexico on a one week tour. Included was a visit to "La Mano Magica" (The Magic Hand), a gallery devoted to Oaxacan Indian art, owned and directed by Mary Jane Gagnier de Mendoza. Sra. Mendoza is French Canadian and is married to one of Mexico’s leading weavers, Arnulfo Mendoza, whose art has received many awards nationally and internationally. His tapestries will be featured at Artspace, and the Mendozas will be present on Saturday, May 10 at 4pm to lecture about his art and other Indian folk art influences and to answer questions. Indian folk art animal carvings of wood as well as prints from the Oaxaca region will also be included in the exhibit organized by "La Mano Magica".

To further amplify the presentations, a group of 100 or more Guatemalan textiles from the collections of Virginia Union University will be shown. Given to VUU by the James Sellmans 15years ago, these have never before been put on view in Richmond. To bring the Latin American theme even closer to Richmond, Artspace is presenting works by local artists with Latin American roots. These include Jorge Benitez, Gloria Chapa, Federico Chiriboga, Rosana Lopez, Margarita Montealegre, Claudia Olivos, Jose Lorenzo Reyna, Diego Sanchez and Javier Tapia. In addition to the exhibitions, Artspace will feature performances by KASWA, a group of Peruvian folk dancers; Aztec folk dancers from Mexico City; and two performances by the Latin Ballet of Virginia directed by Ana King. There will be poetry readings by Maria Espiritu (Peru) and Gregory Donovan (poetry professor from VCU), and story telling by Consuelo Navarro (Ecuador). Lectures on the subject of Latin American art and its influence on the contemporary art scene will be given by Jorge Benitez, Mary Jane Gagnier de Mendoza and Dr. James Farmer, Chair Art History Department, VCU.

This project is part of Artspace’s contribution to the Richmond art community. Latin Americans number over 23,000 now in the Richmond area, and over half of these are Mexicans. Artspace wishes to include this population in the local cultural scene and to indicate to the Richmond art public the variety and excitement of Latin American art and culture.

Opening night for the event is May 2, 2003 from 7-10pm. Mexican foods and Latin American music will be featured at the opening. A special 15th Anniversary Celebration Preview is planned for May 1, from 6-8pm, and will feature a lecture by Jorge Benitez. This event is free for Patrons, Sponsors and Benefactors. The public is welcome to attend. Tickets may be purchased at the door for $10.

Events:

Thursday, May 1, 6 pm
-Preview with refreshments and gallery talk by Jorge Benitz
Admission $10

Friday, May 2, 7-10 pm
-Exhibition Opening Reception Admission Free

Saturday, May 3, 8 pm
-Performance by Tloke Nahauake, Aztec Dances from Mexico City
Admission $8

Sunday, May 4, 4 pm Gallery Talk
-Weaving in the Maya World by Dr. James Farmer, Chair, Department of Art History, Virginia Commonwealth University

Friday, May 9, 8 pm
-Poetry Reading by Maria Espiritu, poet and founder of KASWA, Peruvian Folk Dance Company

Saturday, May 10, 4 pm
-Gallery Talk by Mary Jane Gagnier de Mendoza and her husband Arnulfo Mendoza, acclaimed Zapotec loom weaver, discussing his work and other folk arts from Oaxaca, Mexico

Saturday, May 10, 8 pm and Sunday, May 11, 3 pm
-Performance by the Latin Ballet of Virginia, Ana Ines King, director
Admission $5

Friday, May 16, 8 pm
-Performance by KASWA, Peruvian Folk Dance Company, Latin American ballroom dancing by Faust and Teresa Narvaez, with a special appearance by Carlos Pozzi, virtuoso Argentinean guitarist
Admission $5

Saturday, May 17, 8 pm
-Poetry reading by Gregory Donovan, poetry professor, VCU, and Alfredo Franco, Curator of Education, Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutgers University

Friday, May 23, 8 pm
-Storytelling: Revolutions by Consuelo Navarro, professor of Latin American Literature, Department of Foreign Languages, VCU. Storytelling for adults, featuring legends from Ecuador and adaptations of other Latin American literature
Admission $5

Friday, May 30, 8 pm
-Performance: Orquesta Timbason, directed by Jose Lorenzo, featuring music and songs from Cuba
Admission $10

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