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Oskar’s at Space Presents Bridges and Clouds: Meditations on Immigrant Life
Bridges and Clouds: Meditations on Immigrant Life is a personal meditation on identity: as an immigrant who came to the US as a child or youth and as an adult who has come to know the US as their home now.
Bridges and Clouds: Meditation on Immigrant Life
Composed and Conducted by Diego Melgar
Fernando Ferrarone, Trumpet,
Chris Thompson-Taylor, Tenor Saxophone
Justine Noel Garcia, Vocals
Sean Hannon, Upright Bass
Zander Ambrose, Drums,
Arturo Garcia, Percussion
Diego Melgar, Guitar
The composer immigrated from Peru at the age of 5.
Leonor Falcón: Violin, Viola
Juanma Trujillo: Guitar
Arturo García: Drums
CHAMA (Spanish slang used in Venezuela and Nicaragua for young girl) applies a garage band aesthetic of composed and improvised music, drawing influences from rock, avant-garde, swing and Latin American music.
Leonor, Juanma and Arturo first started as young musicians in Caracas/Venezuela who migrated and reunited 15 years later in the US.
From the artist:
“In times of great need, migration may be necessary.
My parents fled Nicaragua with me when I was only 2 years old. Though I have spent a great majority of my life in America I have never known what it means to feel American. I also don’t know what it means to belong because my native country is just as foreign to me as any other place I’ve never been to.
I have never felt quite at home anywhere. My work deals with this sense of displacement through the constants in my life. Family keeps me grounded as well as the traditions and drives they have instilled. These photographs are an exploration of work, ritual, and uncertainty. They help me gain an understanding of my fractured identity.”
From the artist:
I left Cuba when I was nine years old and this has influenced me in creating these paintings. Most of my memories of Cuba are from old black and white photographs. I have not been back to my homeland since 1980 and the only way I have seen the Cuba of today has been in images from the internet. Just like photographs get old and fade, these memories will also one day disappear.
My artwork is figurative with a strong sense of narration. My paintings incorporate overlapping components of different size papers, canvas pieces, fabric, and wood. The process reminds me of old clothes and objects patched up and utilized instead of discarding them. This is the reality of the Cuban people; due to their harsh economic situation they are forced to restore. It also symbolizes how different events shape your life. The stapling in some of the pieces represent stitches and the scars of the past. The background of my paintings are filled with holes, peeling paint, cracks, and different shades of gray and white. This is a reminder of the deplorable shape Cuba is in. The distressed walls show pain and abandonment. If walls could talk, they would also tell a story.”
Flyer Image by JR