A group of Latina artists are using visual arts--from mural painting, graffiti, and zines--to fuel social change in Chicago's communities. The Mujeres Mutantes Art Collective-- or Mutant Women-- are partnering with art professor Nicole Marroquin from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and UIS gender studies professor Hinda Seif, to address the underrepresentation of Latinas in the arts.
"We kinda have to do it ourselves," says Marroquin about getting exposure as women of color. "The solution is not going to be a blanket policy... it's a lot more leg work. . . and all hands on deck."
Members from the Mutant Women Art Collective bring their art and skills together to also tackle issues like gentrification and the lack of art education in public schools. They offer classes in different communities to reach children and women--and teach them that art can be a form of self expression and empowerment.
The School of the Art Institute of Chicago's Nicole Marroquin and UIS Professor Hinda Seif are working to preserve the history of Latina artists in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood--one of many communities facing gentrification. Their current focus is looking through the work of Pilsen-based artist and educator Diana Solis. Their collaboration on Solis will be published in Dialogo-- a DePaul University publication--in early 2018.
Mujeres Mutantes members Kira Padilla, Teresa Magana and Naomi Martinez joined Professors Nicole Marroquin and Hinda Seif at the UIS Brookens Auditorium on October 2 to discuss these issues.
To learn more about art in Pilsen and upcoming events with Mujeres Mutantes, go to Pilsen Open Studios.