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National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures Announces Grant Recipients

Above: Art by San Antonio-based artist and grantee Michael Menchaca.
Above: Art by San Antonio-based artist and grantee Michael Menchaca.

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS—The National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC) has awarded forty-three grants, totaling $267,000, to twenty-six Latinx artists and collectives and seventeen Latinx arts organizations. Chosen from a pool of nearly four hundred applicants, the grantees will receive between $5,000 and $10,000 in funds for projects exploring social justice, labor rights, and cultural equity, among other subjects.

“Through the NALAC Fund for the Arts we are proud to continue recognizing and investing in Latinx artists and organizations across the country and Puerto Rico,” said María López de León, NALAC’s president and CEO. “These artists and organizations uplift our communities, building opportunities to renew our diverse identities and to imagine ways to move forward in solidarity.”

Among the recipients are playwright Virginia Grise and theater artist Manny Rivera, who will receive a $25,000 Mentorship Award—the largest-ever grant awarded by the organization—to stage an adaptation of Helena Maria Viramontes’ novel “Their Dogs Came with Them” (2000) at the Perryville Women’s Prison in Goodyear, Arizona, and Borderlands Theater in Tucson, Arizona. The show will explore themes of war, homelessness, mental illness, gang life, and state violence.

In addition, Fernando Frias De La Parra was awarded the $10,000 Adán Medrano Legacy Award in Film, designed to support emerging Latinx filmmakers. The monies will go toward the production of Ya No Estoy Aquí, a narrative film about a seventeen-year old Mexican boy who migrates from Monterrey, Mexico, to Jackson Heights, New York.

Other projects selected for grants are Barbed Magazine, which will highlight the work of Mexican artists based in the Metro Detroit area in an upcoming issue; La Paloma Prisoner, a multidisciplinary play about the reclamation of identity by incarcerated women in the Colombian prison system; a female-focused, working class, and social justice oriented radio show; and a series of works on paper by artist Michael Menchaca that explores the impact of Silicon Valley tech giants on the social fabric of Latinx communities.

Earlier this month, NALAC provided $25,000 to ten artists in Puerto Rico to support artistic production on the island. Since its founding in 1989 in San Antonio, Texas, NALAC has awarded more than 560 grants to Latino artists and cultural organizations.

February 26, 2019