Collaborative art in San Diego

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I discovered a very inspiring project via Juxtapoz called La Entrada, a community art effort in San Diego. According to their site, La Entrada is “a collaborative project of public art in personal spaces.” It’s apparently focused around the new affordable housing developments in the Logan Heights area. Apart from beautiful murals meant to uplift the community and reflect its rich, cultural diversity, the art collective is doing much more. Video and details after the jump.

 

The story of the Logan Heights neighborhood is one of growth, racial conflict, destruction and rebirth. It sounds very much like that of Miami’s own Overtown and Wynwood district. Logan Heights has a strong Mexican heritage dating back about one-hundred years, when refugees from  the Mexican revolution fled to the area. It became known by locals and outsiders as Barrio Logan. Throughout its history it was the center of numerous Chicano civil-rights movements, including the fight for access to the beach after getting forced out by the military during WWII as well as getting destroyed and segmented by the construction of a highway, much like Overtown and I-95.

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Chicano Park seems to be the epicenter of its burgeoning cultural scene. It claims to be the worlds largest grouping of outdoor murals (67) and is filled with public sculptures, architectural pieces and other works of art. From the little I have to go on, I imagine it’s much less douchey than our Midtown has become.

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 Apart from murals reflecting a diverse mix of cultural influences, La Entrada holds some pretty cool art education and community outreach workshops. The next two Saturdays will bring locals and artists together to paint and restore doors throughout the neighborhood with art and inspiring messages. On the 21st they will give local kids disposable cameras and tell them to document their communities and the creation of murals.

I think it’s amazing how marketing departments spend millions attempting to do what these guys are doing. Connecting communities. Reaching out in a time of need. Uplifting. Inspiring. Encouraging participation. How many lame Facebook and YouTube campaigns have come and gone? It looks like all it takes are some cans of paint and some disposable cameras.

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~ by Joel on February 25, 2009.

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