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Art for Change: Immigration

2010 September 23
by Ben Achtenberg

Artists Reflect on Immigration’s Meaning, and its Costs

One of our readers, Marissa A. Gutiérrez-Vicario, alerted us to a show currently taking place in New York City through the end of September: Gateway: An Artistic Response to the Immigration Crisis is a project of Art for Change, an East Harlem-based group “that encourages the advancement of progressive social change by using art as a catalyst…”  (image at left from Art for Change)

“Through drawings, sculptures, and site-specific installations, artists explore historical and contemporary narratives within immigration, including: acculturation; gentrification; economic inequality; discrimination and racism; the “culture of exile” and plight of refugees; immigration policies, regulations and reform; and the controversial roles played by politicians, activist groups, and privatized media.” 

Marissa’s own contribution, Storage (detail at right), reacts to the reality that Americans own so many things that we end up renting spaces to store them. In contrast, she has created storage units holding only “those items that a refugee takes with them when forcibly displaced from their home – only objects that are necessary for survival, and grabbed within a moment’s notice.”
…..Check out the group’s website for the list of artists and other details. The show is open during scheduled events and by appointment only, at Harlem Gateway II, 2082 Lexington Avenue at 126th Street.   Contact Eliana Godoy at (646-240-5986) or


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