Loisaida’s Summer Programming
Loisaida is proud to bring our community an ongoing summer program highlighting and revitalizing the migrant experience, our neighborhood’s historical inventiveness, and ecological resilience. Inspired by local artist and activist, Rolando Politi, whose iconic repurposed and recycled sculptures pepper community gardens throughout Loisaida, the program uses place-based pedagogy and recycled materials to equip youth and residents in using creative strategies to address the city’s urgent issues.
This program is funded by the New York City Council’s Cultural Immigrant Initiative.
Building on last year’s successful Garbagia Island, Loisaida Inc. Center will expand this summer into Garbagia Universe. Acting on the continued need to build public historical awareness of cultural immigrant history, and consistent with Loisaida’s commitment to urban place keeping, the project refashions cultural practices of Downtown Latino/a/xs from Carmen Pabón, Jorge Brandon, Bimbo Rivas, Pedro Pietri, Petra Santiago and beyond, to contemporary realities. This second cycle will expand to include and explore the pedagogy and practice of the Latin American modernist, Joaquín Torres García, who lived in New York’s Downtown, and who was the subject of investigation of one of our artist-in-residence, and teaching artists for this cycle, Juan Bautista Climent.
This version will offer three component workshops where participants can hone their skills and realize their final products in a performative exposition. These include sewing and costume making, sculptural and conceptual art, and performance production, over the span of three weeks in August and September.
Loisaida 2017 Summer Program Garbagia Universe was made in collaboration with La Plaza Cultural & L.U.N.G.S., thank you.
“Garbagia Island” is a dystopian representation of the Island of Puerto Rico and it’s current economical and political situation. The story goes along the lines of pirates arriving to an island full of trash, and discovering magical creatures made out of garbage. What it seemed to be a simple pile of waste becomes a fantastical tale for the pirates to appreciate. The pirates who are already filled with music and celebration unify forces with the creatures and people living in the island. The moral of the story is creating consciousness and renaming waste into resource and emphasizing people’s creativity as a tool for recovering gradually from the crisis. We will use historical LES “nuyorican” and LES characters like Carmen Pabón, Jorge Brandon, Bimbo Rivas, Pedro Pietri, Sylvia Rivera, Petra Santiago, Chino García, Silvia Rivera, Adam Purple as inspiration.
Currently the island of Puerto Rico is facing a huge colonial consequence. The people are finally noticing the impotence and fragility of our economy and political situation. It’s very important now to point out to the solutions, more than the problems or flaws. Similar to the self-help spirit of the early residents/founders of the Loisaida neighborhood, the project will emphasize the history of pirates around the Caribbean and their challenging attitude towards how we re-define either/or dichotomies such as: garbage/ treasure, waste/resource, empty lot/green haven, fiscal crisis/ sustainable opportunity, forced migration & displacement/ community building. This way we use our creative thinking into problem solution and acquire a more optimist view of our situation.
Loisaida’s First Summer Program Garbagia Island was made in collaboration with La Plaza Cultural & the Museum of Urban Reclaimed Space and with your support, thank you.