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Columbia College Gets Romántico

By Justin Sondak in Arts & Entertainment on Apr 13, 2006 9:55PM

The easy story told about the artists opening galleries in Pilsen is: white north side art students are forcing Latino and Latina residents out of the neighborhood. There might be some truth to that, but gentrification, like art, is rarely so simple. That story assumes Latinos have no interest in new galleries, and vice versa, and that Important Art requires the approval of rich white folks. Thankfully, those assumptions are way, way off.

loro.jpgJesus Macarena-Avila, the cofounder of the innovative Pilsen space with a subversive Spanish name (Polvo), would probably agree. He’s the curator of Lo Romántico, a survey of emerging Latino and Latina artists opening tonight at Columbia College’s Glass Curtain Gallery. The title refers to immigrants nostalgically romanticizing their heritage in their new home and evokes the tension of finding your own voice when you feel like an outsider, a feeling to which most artists can relate.

Tonight’s opening is part of the build up to this year’s Chicago Latino Film Festival, opening next week and promising a slate as broad as the Latin American experience.

Lo Romantico exhibits at Columbia College’s Glass Curtain Gallery, 1104 S. Wabash Ave, Mondays – Fridays through May 5. Admission is free. More information at their website.

Image via Glass Curtain Gallery.