nvdaily.com link to home page

Traffic | Weather | Mobile Edition
      Subscribe | Special Sections

Lifestyle/Valley Scene arrow Art arrow Big Picture arrow Features

| 0

Creative changes: Hispanic heritage celebrated through artwork by all ages

Tracy Marlatt hangs the work of artist Oscar Cerrito-Mendoza
Tracy Marlatt, executive director of the Shenandoah Arts Council in Winchester, hangs the work of artist Oscar Cerrito-Mendoza for an upcoming show. Dennis Grundman/Daily (Buy photo)

painted floor tiles
Children ages 6 to 10 painted floor tiles at a recent workshop for the Boys and Girls Club in Winchester. The art will be on display at a reception this Sunday at the arts council. Dennis Grundman/Daily (Buy photo)

Cerrito-Mendoza's artwork
Cerrito-Mendoza's artwork celebrates several different mediums, from charcoal drawing to acrylic painting. Dennis Grundman/Daily (Buy photo)

Tracy Marlartt hangs artwork
Tracy Marlartt, executive director of the Shenandoah Arts Council, hangs the work of Oscar Cerrito-Mendoza for an upcoming show. Dennis Grundman/Daily (Buy photo)

By Josette Keelor -- jkeelor@nvdaily.com

WINCHESTER -- Meeting the need of the community has inspired some creative changes at the Shenandoah Arts Council.

The gallery, at 811 S. Loudoun St., has long celebrated various groups of people through its wide range of programs, but only recently added Hispanic Heritage Month to its calendar of events.

"Lately the Spanish population has surpassed the black population," said Tracy Marlatt, executive director of the council. The council has observed Black History Month for years, and she began to wonder why it had not been celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15.

"To build more awareness of our community together" is the council's goal in offering what it hopes will be an annual month of events, Marlatt says. The council was able to move forward with its plans after a grant from the Marion Park Lewis Foundation for the Arts, which -- according to its Web site, mplf-arts.org -- was established in 1992 to provide arts education opportunities to residents of the Northern Shenandoah Valley.

A reception from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday will feature a presentation by poet Wilfredo Bohórquez, author of "Immigrant Voices," at 3:30 p.m.

The gallery at the Shenandoah Arts Council will reflect the collective efforts of local children who recently participated in two separate art workshops in Winchester.

The workshops took place on Sept. 11 at the Boys and Girls Club at 598 N. Kent St. and on Sept. 19 at Bellview Apartments on Bellview Avenue. They provided children in the Hispanic community a chance to learn from experts and spotlight their artistic talents.

Since the council had never before offered the workshops to the Hispanic community, it began with the youth population.

"We thought working with children was a safe entree [to Hispanic Heritage Month]," Marlatt says.

Winchester artist Oscar Cerrito-Mendoza, who co-coordinated the efforts with local artist Jose Antonio Perez, attended the second workshop, helping the children realize their ideas in an artistic format, Marlatt says. At both workshops they worked with white painted tiles and doors, using the materials as a canvas.

"We're going to put up all of the artwork," Marlatt says of the 60 workshop participants' efforts.

The gallery will also spotlight the work of Cerrito-Mendoza, which reflects various artistic mediums -- charcoal drawing, acrylic paint and stippling with pens.

"This is the first time he's ever exhibited his work," Marlatt says.

Marlatt realized from the turnout that there's a real need for these types of programs in the community and hopes to continue Hispanic Heritage Month each year.

"It was just a great experience," she says. "It's just a small stone in a big pond, but I hope word will get out locally ... and that the [participation] grows for next year."

Providing an artistic release for the community's youths is not her only goal, though. After visiting with the residents at Bellview Apartments, Marlatt noticed a broken shell of a swing set, which is missing swings and a slide.

"Hopefully we can raise some money to get some swings there for those kids," she says.

A reception spotlighting the work of local artists will take place at the Shenandoah Arts Council, at 811 S. Loudoun St. in Winchester, from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday. Local author Wilfredo Bohórquez will give a presentation at 3:30 p.m. For more information, call 667-5166.


Comments that are posted represent the opinion of the commenter and not the Northern Virginia Daily/nvdaily.com. View our comments/submisssions policy. Report abuse by clicking the X next to the comment.

Star Readers Recommend

Lifestyle Sections

Apple Blossom Festival Art Ask The Doctor Big Picture Books Brad Fauber Brides Cars Clarke County Community News Dance Dining Edinburg Entertainment Fairs Fall 2010 Family Features Festivals Food Frederick County Front Royal Gaming Haunting Tales Health History Holidays Home & Garden In The Spotlight Jeff Nations Josette Keelor Lottery Media Menu Milestones Moms Movies Music Neighborhood Notes Pets & Animals Recreation Religion Ryan Cornell Schools Shenandoah County Strasburg 250th Surviving Cancer Teens Theatre Valley Seniors Warren County Winchester

Look Who 'Likes' nvdaily!

Daily readers: Click the "LIKE" button above to get Daily news and breaking news alerts on your Facebook page.

Activity & Recommendations

News | Sports | Business | Lifestyle | Obituaries | Opinion | Multimedia| Entertainment | Classifieds
Contact Us | NIE | Place a Classified | Privacy Policy | Comments/Submissions Policy | Subscribe

Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily | nvdaily.com | 152 N. Holliday St., Strasburg, Va. 22657 | (800) 296-5137

2014 Virginia Press Association Grand Sweepstakes Winner
The Best Small Daily Newspaper in Virginia!

nvdaily.com | seeshenandoah.com