Sunday, April 3, 2022
The “Being Heard, Being Seen” art exhibit, a celebration of self-identity and expression by local artists who identify as LGBTQ+, is on display through April 9 at the Cultural Council for Palm Beach County.
A 7-foot figure offering masks, interactive poetry and paintings covered with shiny, smooth resin are part of the exhibit that explores the rights, representation and experiences of the LGBTQ+ community.
“The goal of this exhibition is to encourage everyone to be their authentic selves, to champion understanding, compassion and important conversations, and to create a safe space where everyone feels heard and seen for who they are — without question or compromise. When we do that, we make room for real impact,” said Dave Lawrence, the Cultural Council president and chief executive officer.
COVID-19 has been a powerful influence in the artwork, said Jessica Ransom, director of Artist Services. Solitude, kindness and people masking their feelings during the outbreak are vividly shown in the artwork, she said.
“We have amazing artists in our community. They are putting their hearts and beings into their work,” said Ransom.
Viewers can interact with a poetry exhibit by Stacie M. Kiner and her partner Dianna I. Rosenberg. After reading the poetry, viewers are invited to write down and submit their reactions on sheets of paper.
“I want everyone to have their basic needs met,” wrote one viewer.
An exhibit by Rolando Chang Barrero, founder of the Box Gallery in West Palm Beach, is a series of acrylics showing about 50 faces lined up on the wall. Colorful, mysterious and expressive, they show joy, hope, surprise, love, sadness and fear.
The colors do not match the expressions. A fearful face is painted bright orange connoting happiness. A grinning, eyebrow-raised face is grayish, reflecting sadness.
“That’s where the mask comes in. Many of us were wearing masks to the world during the pandemic, hiding our real emotions,” said Ransom.- continue reading
Friday, February 4, 2022
Thursday, January 13, 2022
by Rolando Chang Barrero
Cultural Council for Palm Beach County
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BEING HEARD, BEING SEEN MEMBER PREVIEW + ART&CULTURE WINTER 2022 LAUNCH PARTY
Saturday, December 25, 2021
Florida official called Latinx a 'ridiculous woke term.' Some LGBTQ+ people call it a lifeline
It's a word for those 'at the intersection of Latin American and queer,' one advocate says
Ana Goñi-Lessan and Katherine KokalUSA TODAY NETWORK – FLORIDA
Read Full Story Here:
Hispanic, Latinx Americans push back against generalizations
Some leaders are more hesitant to use "Latinx" because they say it's used to paint people with Spanish-speaking ancestry with too broad a brush — a criticism often launched at media organizations, universities, and governments that refer to Hispanic people and Spanish speakers as if they are a monolithic group.
"Latinx is an attempt by leftists to rework our home language," said Rolando Chang Barrero, a Cuban LGBTQ+ community organizer, art gallery owner and member of the Palm Beach County Democratic Caucus.
"Classifying us as Latinx or even as Hispanic is a misnomer that does not represent the 33 foreign countries represented in my community. Each country is as nuanced as the United States," Barrero added.
Pan-ethnic labels used to describe people from Spanish-speaking countries are not an invention of the 21st century, Barrero said.
The 1980 U.S. Census was the first decennial count to ask respondents if they were "Hispanic." Previously, the Census attempted to quantify people by asking if they had Spanish surnames or whether they spoke Spanish at home.
In 2020, the Census asked respondents whether they were of "Hispanic, Latino or Spanish origin." The question included a space to specify a person's country of ethnic origin.
But even those terms are nuanced.
Hispanic origin refers to any person whose family comes from a Spanish-speaking country, whereas Latino or Latina refers to a person whose family comes from a Latin American country in Central or South America or the Caribbean.
Barrero said the introduction of umbrella terms like Hispanic and Latinx lead to generalizations about people who hail from Spanish-speaking countries instead of a greater understanding of their cultures and traditions.
"They’re using the word like 'the Hispanic market' and '(the) Hispanic voting block.' That has caused a lot of interference in understanding who we are as a people," Barrero said. "We share a language, but that’s where it begins and where it ends."
Barrero, a gay person who uses both he/him and ze/zir pronouns, said while he takes issue with non-Hispanic people using Latinx to describe many communities all together, people who are Hispanic and nonbinary or transgender should feel supported when they use it.
"I completely respect someone's pronouns and their identity, but we should not (all) fall under that label." Barrero said. "We have many nuanced people in our community and that hasn't reached the mainstream."
Barrero and others are pushing for an understanding of "intersectionality" — a respect for all of a person's identities when considering their life experience — in Hispanic and Latin American communities.
Wednesday, November 17, 2021
WATCH LIVESTREAM at 1PM
Discussion of the challenges faced by returning citizens from jail and prison with
Rolando Barrero and Jonathan Bleiweiss
November 18, 202 at 1 PM
Friday, November 5, 2021
Friday, October 22, 2021
Tuesday, October 5, 2021
Thursday, February 11, 2021
The Box Gallery
Blank Slate Fine Art Exhibition
Rolando Chang Barrero
Other images and interviews are available upon request.
West Palm Beach, FL 01-22-2021--Domenic Esposito will be showing his new series of artwork entitled Blank Slate, along with select pieces of his signature work addressing the Opioid Crisis, at the socially conscious Box Gallery in West Palm Beach's “Cultural Corridor.”
Esposito's new series titled "Blank Slate" represents the artist's reflections upon current times and the era of fear, depression, and loneliness experienced in the "new normal." Esposito explores the isolation of those living with mental illness and those suffering from substance abuse whose challenges have been exacerbated and laid bare.
All the figures depicted in Blank Slate are hooded; their faces are either totally or partially hidden from view. Many pieces contrast bronze patinas with painted backgrounds illuminating the hooded figures' hidden, inner world, alluding to the wearer's identity. Through the combination of two and three-dimensional media, the artworks push the hooded subject into our visceral space creating conflict between the figure's desire to be hidden and the viewer's own incompatible impulses to ignore, expose and understand.
The Blank Slate Exhibition will open with a reception on on March 6th and continue through March 29, 2021. Gallery hours are Tuesday-Saturday 11-6 p.m. or by appointment.
Sunday, February 7, 2021
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Saturday, January 23, 2021
“In Time of Protest Art Exhibit” on Display at Miramar Cultural Center Curated by Rolando Chang Barrero
|Self Portrait with Found Object(ive) by Rolando Chang Barrerro|