‘Earth’ celebrates diversity of Hispanic heritage through art

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A report from the Poughkeepsie Journal.

Celebrating diversity is a theme that weaves its way through the artwork in the annual exhibition of Latino-American Artists of the Hudson Valley this month in Beacon.

“Earth: A World of Colors, Values, Imagination” opens Saturday, Sept. 2, at the Howland Cultural Center. Sixteen artists representing their Hispanic heritage from seven Latino-speaking nations — the Caribbean, Cuba, Mexico, Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain and Brazil — are featured.

The artists — Jose Acosta, Salvador Arellano, Pablo Avera, Emil Figueroa, Rafael Figueroa, Jose Gomez, Jose Gonzalez-Soto, Bea Gustafson, Maria Lago, Raphael Lopez, Nestor Madalengoitia, Wilfredo Morel, Joseph Pimentel, Marisa del Pozo Slick, Julia Santos Solomon and Liliana Washburn — offer a diversity of expression and creativity with their artworks of paintings, sculpture and photography.

The formal recognition of Hispanic-Americans began in 1968 when Congress authorized President Lyndon Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week and later, in 1988, expanded by President Ronald Reagan to a month-long recognition and celebration honoring the nation‘s Hispanic heritage and culture.

According to the 2010 Census, 50.5 million, or 16 percent, of the national population are people of Spanish, Hispanic and/or Latino origin, compared to the 2000 Census which registered the Hispanic population at 35.3 million or 13 percent of the total U.S. population.

The Howland Cultural Center features an exhibit each year to mark the diversity and talent of Latino-American artists and to celebrate the cultural traditions of the Hispanic community.

The exhibit runs through the month of September.

If you go

What: “Earth: A World of Colors, Values, Imagination,” exhibit to celebrate annual Hispanic-American History Month

When: 3-5, Sept. 2, opening reception; exhibit runs through Sept. 30; gallery hours: 1-5 p.m., Friday-Monday; gallery will be closed Sept. 17 when the Howland Chamber Music Circle will present the Pacifica Quartet in concert at 4 p.m.

Where: Howland Cultural Center, 477 Main St., Beacon

Information: Call 845-831-4988; visit http://www.howlandculturalcenter.org/;

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