Cultural Inferno: A Blazing Revolt

This week’s edition covers stories 
from June 8th to June 14th, 2023.

Today’s issue is 850 words, a 6.5minute read.

In today’s edition: Isabella and Helene talk ReVisión at the MIA and the importance of proper cultural representation, and the effects of the Canadian Wildfires.

Buenos días readers,

It’s a smoky hot summer but I’ve been spending my time away by the lake. In these past weeks I’ve experienced sunny days on a Minneapolis beach, a sunset by a Wisconsin farm, a windy thunderstorm in Jeffers, Minnesota, and a foggy view of the Twin Cities – cough, cough. But that’s not all there is to this upcoming week. We have many events that I bet you’d enjoy attending. 

This Saturday Summer Cypher is “back on the block”. From 2 P.M. to 10 P.M. enjoy 50 years of Hip Hop celebration by the Northside of the Northrup King Building, with food provided by P.F. Cafe. MPR also put together a list of wondeful Juneteenth events all around Minnesota between Friday 16th and Monday 19th. I’m really looking forward to this year’s Soul Of The Southside at the Hook and Ladder Theater, and Carbon Sound’s 1st Birthday Party. You know we’re all about the local and we want our readers to be in the know. 


Leo Chiachio & Daniel Giannone, (Argentinean, born 1969; Argentinean, born 1964), Calaverita (detail), 2014. Hand embroidery with cotton thread and jewelry effect on Alexander Henry fabric. Denver Art Museum: Funds from the Ralph L. and Florence R. Burgess Trust, 2022.50. ©️ Chiachio & Giannone. Photo by Christina Jackson, courtesy Denver Art Museum 📸 Minneapolis Institute Art

An exhibit I’ve been dying to see is ReVisión: Art in the Americas at the Minneapolis Institute of Art, in partnership with the Denver Art Museum. From July 1st, 2023 to September 17th 2023, you’ll find “nearly 200 ancient contemporary artworks that establish a visual narrative of the formation and evolution of the Americas”. Descriptions of the artwork will be provided in English and Spanish, so bring friends, family, and yourself to this beautiful representational collection. 

It’s time that we start looking at our communities through a myriad of lenses. This exhibit is meant to juxtapose ancient and contemporary artworks that can show visitors the deep rooted importance of community and cultural traditions that have undergone exploitation of various forms and shapes. 

Here at NewPrensa we’ve talked about the amazing Brazilian Ken and Linda Cutler Chair of the Arts of the Americas and curator of Latin American art at Mia, Valéria Piccoli. The first curator of Latin America Art. In Minnesota. I know some of us are tired of hearing about the “first this” or the “first that”, but comprehending the extensive influence that individuals can bring to spaces that lack the diversity and understanding is pivotal. We’ve also extensively talked about the importance of clear, valid and respectful representation of BIPOC communities in the arts. Earlier this year, Guatemala-Minnesotan artist Zamara Cuyún (“Gringindia“) spoke of female Latinx representation at the LatinActivista ‘23 event. 

Oftentimes, different communities have had their bodies and souls warped, whether it be honest historical representations or the deep-rooted, colonialist and racist fantasies that have transformed into a fetish of some sort. I don’t intend to steer onto a tangent. It is essential to comprehend the profundity that artistic cultural representation has when it is uncanny to your own. It also stirs up the idea of a community being culturally barren. Yet, many of us persist and strive for honest, fertile, and magical representations of our truth.

To my fellow Latines, I say Go. Visit the exhibit, share it with your loved ones. Understand the past to imagine the possibilities of the future. Art speaks volumes, and it augments your cultural reality. Invest in Art.

A person wears a face mask as smoke from wildfires in Canada cause hazy conditions in New York City on June 7, 2023. 📸 Angela Weiss | Getty Images 

Helene here.

I’ve been watching New York City turn orange over the past week with the rest of the world. Horrifying! The wildfire smoke coming from Canadian fires is super damaging, and last Wednesday was so bad that it now holds the record for the most micro particles (or pollution) in the air since New York started collecting information on air quality back in 1999. The particles that are being monitored by sensors in the city are very small, and they’re dangerous because they can penetrate the lungs and bloodstream. The levels of these particles were nearly 6 times higher than what the EPA says is a safe average level. 

Closer to home, the U.S. Forest Service is monitoring a wildfire that’s spreading through the northernmost parts of the Boundary Waters (BWCA), right where the U.S./Canada border lies. It’s around 30 acres big and is affecting the forest between Spice Lake and Ogishkemuncie Lake, which are about 10 miles southwest of the end of the Gunflint Trail. The Forest Service also announced a ban on campfires in the whole BWCA until further notice, something that comes as a result of ongoing dry conditions. As a big fan and nearly annual BWCA visitor, this news is super scary! It’s something that affected visitors to the BWCA last year, with many groups not being able to even make their trips into the wilderness area due to all of the fires. If you’re like me, and love the Boundary Waters, take care when you visit this summer, and treat this beloved area with all of the care it deserves! 

That’s all from us this week. Take care, readers! We’ll be back next Thursday. 

-Isabella and Helene 

Hi, friend: Helene and Isabella here! 
We’re Communications Specialists by day
and enjoying pistachio cream ales by night! 

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