Tag Archives: A Viva Voz

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Tish Hinojosa and Lourdes Pérez to Headline 17th Annual ¡A Viva Voz!

LLILAS Benson Latin American Studies and Collections is proud to present “Cantos y Cuentos: An Evening with Tish Hinojosa and Lourdes Pérez” for the 17th annual ¡A Viva Voz! Celebration of Latina/o Arts and Culture, coming to the Benson Latin American Collection, 2300 Red River Street, on Thursday, April 4, 2019, at 7 p.m.

In “Cantos y Cuentos,” San Antonio native Tish Hinojosa and Puerto Rican–born Lourdes Pérez will share the stage for song and conversation, giving the audience a front seat to the stories and histories behind each composer’s music, and glimpse of a friendship that spans many years.

Tish Hinojosa
Tish Hinojosa

Hinojosa is one of 13 children born to immigrant parents. The Southwest has been a focal point for her songwriting in English and Spanish, in styles ranging from Tejano to singer-songwriter folk, border music, and country. In a career spanning more than three decades, she has toured extensively in the U.S. and Europe, recorded in English and Spanish as an independent artist for major record labels, and has been a featured artist on Austin City Limits and A Prairie Home Companion. Hinojosa was praised by the Chicago Tribune as “a first-class songwriter,” and her supple voice lends itself well to a variety of genres. Her most recent album, West, includes new originals and an eclectic mix of covers.

West album cover Hinojosa

Hinojosa was an invited performer at the White House at the invitation of President Bill Clinton and then First Lady Hillary Clinton. She has performed with Joan Baez, Booker T. Jones, Flaco Jimenez, Pete Seeger, and Dwight Yoakam. The Benson Latin American Collection is the repository of Hinojosa’s archive.

Lourdes Pérez, photo: Annette D'Armata
Lourdes Pérez, photo: Jennifer Davis, 2019

When she began touring in the early 1990s, Lourdes Pérez was one of the only out Latina lesbians in the music world. Known for her soulful contralto voice, she takes on difficult topics in her songs, such as war and social justice, but also pens beautifully crafted lyrics on a range of topics. She is one of the few female writers of décimas, a form of Spanish poetry. Pérez’s performances have taken her to war zones and contested areas such as Chiapas and Palestine, and she has collaborated onstage and off with songwriters and performers in those areas and others, including translating lyrics from Arabic into Spanish.

In 2006, Pérez was one the first five artists in the US to be awarded a United States Artists Fellowship for Music, naming her “one of the finest living artists in the country.” Pérez is also a poet and oral historian. Her most recent project, Still Here: Homenaje al West Side de San Antonio, is a book and CD with original compositions by Pérez, performed by a variety of artists, inspired by oral histories of some of San Antonio’s most revered elders. The release of the project included a multimedia performance.

Still Here cover Perez

This event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow the performance. RSVP requested at http://attend.com/avivavoz17.

The Art of Carmen Lomas Garza

Tamalada 2003 (2003) by Carmen Lomas Garza. IRIS giclée digital print on paper, 4/180. Benson Latin American Collection.
Tamalada (2003) by Carmen Lomas Garza.
IRIS giclée digital print on paper, 4/180. Benson Latin American Collection.

Born in 1948, much of Carmen Lomas Garza’s work reflects upon her formative years in Kingsville, Texas. Drawing on her experiences in a close-knit Mexican-American community, Garza’s work focuses on memories of everyday life with her family and her community.

In 2009, Garza was the featured artist for the Benson Latin American Collection’s annual ¡A Viva Voz! celebration of Latino culture where she talked about her life, her art and her influences — an event that was accompanied by an exhibition of 20 original serigraphs of her work.

Thanks in part to a generous donation by the Libraries’ own Linda Abbey and her husband Mark Hayward, the Benson was able to acquire those works of art in giclée, lithograph and serigraph form to join Lomas Garza’s archive as part of the permanent collections at the library.

Carmen Lomas Garza with Librarian Margo Gutiérrez.
Carmen Lomas Garza with Librarian Margo Gutiérrez.

Chican@ Artists Take Over

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For its tenth annual salute to Latino culture occurring this evening, “¡A Viva Voz!” aims to wake audiences up with a couple of artist provocateurs.

Nao Bustamante and Ricardo Domínguez create works that draw upon new media and information technology to inform and provoke dialogue on Latino cultural and political issues.

The performance artists will present their work at the Benson Latin American Collection in Sid Richardson Hall, from 7-9 p.m., tonight, Thursday, April 12. The event is free and open to the public.

Nao Bustamante’s work employs video installation, visual art, filmmaking and writing, but she is perhaps best known for her absorbing and sometimes outrageous performance art (such as faking her way onto The Joan Rivers Show as a “stunt exhibitionist” in 1992). Popularly known for her appearance in the Bravo Network television show “A Work of Art: The Next Great Artist,” she has also exhibited at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, the New York Museum of Modern Art, the Sundance Film Festival and the Kiasma Museum of Helsinki. She is currently an associate professor in the Department of Arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Ricardo Domínguez is a co-founder of the Electronic Disturbance Theater, a group who developed Virtual-Sit-In technologies in 1998 in solidarity with the Zapatista communities in Chiapas, Mexico. His recent projects include the Transborder Immigrant Tool, a GPS cellphone safety net tool for crossing the Mexico/U.S border and “Drones at Home,” an exhibition on drones, drone economies and art. Domínguez is also an associate professor in the Visual Arts Department at Univeristy of California-San Diego.

¡A Viva Voz! Goes to the Movies

And…action!

The Benson Latin American Collection presents its ninth annual ¡A Viva Voz! at 7pm this Thursday featuring film producer Elizabeth Avellán, co-owner (with director Robert Rodriguez) and vice president of Troublemaker Studios.

Avellán co-founded Los Hooligan Productions with Rodriguez when the two began work on El Mariachi (1992) in 1991. She co-produced From Dusk Till Dawn (1996), Desperado (1995) and The Faculty (1998). In 2000, Los Hooligan became Troublemaker Studios, which has since generated such notable films as the Spy Kids franchise, Sin City (2005), the Rodriguez/Tarantino double-feature, B-Movie homage Grindhouse (2007), Predators (2010) and Machete (2010).

Avellán will discuss her work and rare position as a Latino woman in the traditionally male-dominated film business.

Charles Ramirez-Berg of the Department of Radio-Television-Film will make an introduction, and food will be provided by El Meson.

An exhibit of cinematic materials from Troublemaker Studios and Cine Las Americas as well as rare materials on the Golden Age of Mexican Cinema from the Benson’s extensive archival holdings will be on view at the Benson, as well.

Check out the trailer for Avellán’s latest production credit, just off its SXSW showing, Blacktino.

¡A Viva Voz! gets funky with Ocote Soul Sounds

Ocote Soul Sounds members Adrian Quesada (white shirt) and Marti
Ocote Soul Sounds members Adrian Quesada and Martin Perna. Photo courtesy Ocote Soul Sounds.

¡Baile!

The Benson Latin American Collection is going to be “coconut rock” central next Thursday (4/8) when Austin-born psychedelic Afro-Latin funk band Ocote Soul Sounds throw down the beats as part of the eighth annual ¡A Viva Voz!

Featuring the bandleaders of Grupo Fantasma and Antibalas – Adrian Quesada and Martin Perna, respectively – Ocote Soul Sounds has been described as “sounding like a sun kissed Brazilian soundtrack from the ’70s.”

¡A Viva Voz! kicks off  at 7pm with a lite reception and presentation by dj t-kay of KOOP 91.7 fm before the band starts to jam and those so inclined shake it up on the dance floor.

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