A talk with Juan Sanchez

Hey there Grapevinettes-

Today I had the opportunity to work with artist Juan Sanchez in studio at Harlem Textile Works. My friend, and fellow teaching artist Shani Peters is aiding him print a series to be displayed at a solo show at Southern Graphics Conference 2010 in Philly.

I told him about my idea for Grapevine Ink, and my desire to start up a Women of Color Printmakers Collective but also my hesitation to call it that. My concerns ranging to how the term people of color is thought of internationally, to how people of mixed race heritage identify, and also how exclusivity can sometimes be damaging or limiting.

Sanchez was very supportive about Grapevine Ink, and dropped some knowledge on me. I wish I had a tape recorder cause that woulda been posted UP for ya'll!

He made the point that while some people are opposed to making groups exclusive, its really important that oppressed people work to make opportunities and venues FOR THEMSELVES and that those avenues should be preserved for future generations of artists. It's not about excluding anybody or so-called "reverse discrimination", but recognizing that as women and peoples of oppressed nationalities, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation etc. we have been and continue to be marginalized in the art world and we have to work together to give ourselves spaces to change this.

I am still struggling with the right kind or rhetoric to use when describing Grapevine Ink. The mission statement is so important, and I've received so much great feedback, ideas and encouragement from all of you!

I look forward to your comments, and hopefully some posts from ya'll!
Expect an email soon from me!

Much Love,

*This image displayed is by Juan Sanchez
Victoria de Samotracia (Afro-Taina)
Collagraph, duotone litho, hand-painted, feathers, raffia