Thursday, July 14, 2016

City Paper review and other thoughts...

CP art critic John Anderson pops in with a nice review of the current show at American University's Katzen Museum... read it here.

And also just home from a packed, sold out lecture on the show at the Katzen... moderated by the amazing Jack Rasmussen and some excellent questions by AU Prof Adrienne Pine who wrote the very left-wingy but interesting essay for the exhibition's catalog.
There were also some interesting questions to my Colombian peeps Carolina Mayorga, whose performance at the openings, which you can also see on the video at the exhibition, raised a lot of interesting points.

Third use of the word "interesting" in the last two paragraphs.

Muriel Hasbun brought live heart beats from El Salvador, delivered dynamically across cyberspace and played in the background of the discussion... all part of her ever evolving mixed medias presentations.
I discussed what I call "Cuban privilege", which I define (since I invented the term), as the superior attitude that us Cubans have towards all other immigrants to the US.
Notice that I said "all", not just Latin American immigrants (legal or otherwise).
Cuban privilege: Immediate welcome, quick green card status, middle class entry (thanks to a well established and wealthy Cuban-American community infrastructure), educational/cultural inprints, solid familial and clannish unity, and a lack of "victimism" as an attitude.
Of course, that attitude is defined by a set of singularly unique characteristics that defined the Cuban mass migration the the US in the 1960s: a migration of the upper and middle classes, rather than the impoverished poor strata of most historical migrations to the US, a racial welcome of a mostly white immigrant wave, and the fact that most Cubans identify as Republicans certainly didn't hurt.
A far cry from the daily stresses and legal issues that most illegal immigrants face around our region, mostly very poor Central Americans looking North for a better life away from violence and poverty.
The audience gasped when I told them that my father didn't identify as a "Hispanic" or as a "Latino."
"I am a Cuban," he'd say proudly. And when he became a US citizen he changed that to "En mi corazon siempre sere Cubano, pero desde hoy, en mi alma soy Americano." 
Cubans are archaic immigrants... we love this great nation with a passionate, sometimes dangerous love that often clouds our perspectives and opinions. 

Nuff said!