Friday, March 3, 2017

Day 29: Jewell Medina

Artist Statement
My own art activism started as a young girl when I would design altar installations with my grandmothers and grow medicinal herbs in our gardens for healing.  As early as second grade with Ms. Martin I wrote an award winning testimony about my mother and grandmothers life growing up in Guadalupe Az. I was living with my parents and two sisters and a brother in a one bedroom home in Barrio Campito. El Campito was named the camp because this was once the outskirt of the city and city dwellers would see campfires out in this location because that is where the migrants lived.  The teacher told me I had a flare for writing. After this I wrote all our grief, pain, and suffering into the stories and design of installations in the forms of altars and cajitas. 

My artist career grew in graduate school while working an internship for the Arizona State Chicano archives. At the archives I learned about arrangement and stories through oral history and visual ethnography. I further expanded my perception and knowledge about art as activism. All of my work is targeted to speak to a revolution. In my time before becoming an artist most of the time I worked on human trafficking networks, domestic violence councils and as an art historian and ethnic studies professor. I feel strongly that art is a tool to mobilize the people to take action on the issues that are most passionate to their hearts. I believe as Frida Kahlo stated that I paint my own reality. Art shapes reality and influences the outer. It all starts in the mind and our creativity shapes the world we live in and create. Currently I am working on a piece to assist women in the arts. I am mostly interested in how women navigate the political climate and speak truth to power. Women are powerful agents of change to create their own stories and herstories with their artivism.
Instagram: Jewell Medina

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