Meet our 2014 Fellows!
Please tell us of an artist, curator, activist, or project that has influenced you or inspired you?
I’m very inspired by the work of Pepón Osorio, a Latino installation artist from Puerto Rico, whose work explores a variety of themes along the lines of culture, community, and activism. I first came across Pepón Osorio while reading “English is Broken Here: Note on Cultural Fusion in the Americas” by Coco Fusco and was immediately drawn to the sensibilities within his work. For me at that time, Osorio’s surrealist, yet realistic installation work challenged me to see my environments in a different way, to embrace the creative in the everyday, and to think about my responsibility as an artist to my communities.
Please tell us about a place in your neighborhood that is personally meaningful to you, and why?
As someone who grew up in Queens and continues to live here, there are many places in my neighborhood that carry various sorts of meaning for me. One place in particular that comes to mind is the bodega at the corner of my building, which recently closed last year. This bodega was the place I would visit everyday after school to buy snacks, the place where my cousins and I bought assortments of ice cream and candy, and was even the place where I had a small accident as a toddler when I really had to go to the bathroom. This bodega became a central place in my everyday without me even noticing and I was very heartbroken when they were forced to close.
What is your favorite book, film or song about NYC?
I’m kind of a sucker for Christmas because I really enjoy snow and presents (who doesn’t love presents) so it should come as no surprise that my favorite song about NYC is “Christmas in Hollis” by RUN-DMC. It’s combines two of my favorite things, Christmas and Queens!
If you have an idea of a blog post or topic you’d like to contribute to our blog, please share below!
Lately, I’ve been more intentionally exploring or identifying emotionality or affect with my work. I would be really interested in writing a blog post about emotionality or sentimentality related to public space and/or neighborhoods as well as what the arts can offer within this conversation.