On October 9 – 17, 2016, SAY Sí will send a select number of juniors and seniors from their multidisciplinary arts program as project leaders in an artist residency to Mexico City, Mexico in partnership with FARO [Fábrica de Artes y Oficios] de Oriente, a cultural arts center and organization that serves the city’s lztapalapa borough.

This is the third SAY Sí artist residency in their Project Papalote series, a national and international cultural and educational exchange initiative supported by Adobe Project 1324. Students traveling to Mexico City will meet with their youth counterparts as well as teaching artists and mentors to share and learn about each other’s culture and identity. The thematic approach to the residency is a focus of borders and origins. Students will create art that breaks down boundaries as a way of unification.

Being a non-profit based in San Antonio where 70% of the population is Latino, the majority of SAY Sí students are  3rd or 4th generation Mexican descent, with very few visiting the origins of their cultural roots. Naturally, cultural identity and exploring one’s roots are important concepts San Antonio Latino youth face today that can apply to the transformative theme of “borders” that will be touched upon heavily on this trip.

“This cultural travel residency has been a significant opportunity for our organization and students” states Jon Hinojosa, SAY Sí Artistic/Executive Director. “This trip in particular will provide our students with a deeper understanding of their, and our cities ties to Mexico”.

Prior to this cultural residency, the youth and program staff will travel to Oaxaca to attend and participate in the Oaxaca Film Festival, an international film festival held in Oaxaca City, the state best known for its indigenous peoples and cultures.

After the Mexico City collaboration, SAY Sí’s Project Papalote will continue into November as the organization welcomes youth members from Prayasam, an organization based in Kolkata, India, for a collaborative project about the connections between Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) and the Indian celebration Pitru Paksha (fortnight of the ancestors).

Photos and interviews will be available during and after the residency takes place. Photos of all previous Project Papalote residencies can be found at: bit.ly/ProjectPapalote.

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