Sunday, April 18, 2021
Cesar Chavez to be Remembered with Film, Art, March
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At 15 artist John Zender Estrada lived in Mexico City where he came to respect famous Mexican muralists like Diego Rivera.
   
Friday, March 19, 2021
 

BY LUIS ALBERTO LECANDA

 A film and discussion by the grandson of activist Cesar Chavez and art from a pioneer of the Los Angeles style of graffiti art will draw attention to the contributions of Hispanics next week.

 The art and film event, "Past, Present and Future Voices: Artivism,” will be held Tuesday, March 23.

  • The Spot, 220 Lewis St., in Ketchum, will host an exhibition of John Zender Estrada’sart from noon to 8 p.m. Zender will be on hand to discuss his work. The number of people allowed at one time will be limited. Tickets are $10 and may be purchased at The Spot or online at https://crisishotlineidaho.networkforgood.com/events/27247-artivism-a-tribute-to-past-present-and-future-voices
  • The Community Library will host two free virtual screenings of Eduardo Chavez’s documentary “Hailing Cesar” at 3 and 6:30 p.m. at www.livestream.com/comlib. Both will be followed by a Q&A from Chavez. Those who do not have Wi-Fi can watch the 3 p.m. showing on one of the Library’s computers. At 6:30 they can use the outdoor Library Wi-Fi.
  • Chavez will lead La Marcha, inspired by the tradition of public movements by Cesar Chavez, from The Spot to the Community Library at 5 p.m. Monica Carrillo will play “De Colores,” which was one of the commonly heard songs sung during United Farm Workers rallies. Guest speakers will include Herbert Romero, Eduardo Chavez and John Zender Estrada.  

 
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Eduardo Chavez says he even picked grapes to better understand his grandfather, who died when he was 3.
 

 Cesar Chavez was an American labor rights activist who used strikes, pickets and boycotts to pressure farm owners into improving conditions for laborers.

He was a U.S. Navy veteran, civil rights leader, labor icon, farmworker's champion, and founder of the National Farm Workers Association, said Herbert Romero, founder of Hispanic/LatinUS TaskForce and lead organizer of the event,

 The legacy of the civil rights leader has been recognized and honored by communities throughout the country and best described in the 2014 President Proclamation declaring Chávez's birthday on March 31 a national commemorative holiday:

“Throughout his lifelong struggle, Cesar Chavez never forgot who he was fighting for,” said President Barack Obama in the proclamation. “What [the growers] don't know, is that it's not bananas or grapes or lettuce. It's people. Today, let us honor Cesar Chavez and those who marched with him by meeting our obligations to one another. I encourage Americans to make this a national day of service and education by speaking out, organizing, and participating in service projects to improve lives in their communities. Let us remember that when we lift each other up, when we speak with one voice, we have the power to build a better world.”

 Estrada, who has produced more than 300 colorful murals throughout the United States, says his art is inspired by the interconnection of all.

“One of the most important factors about art is it can unite and tie in humanity as a whole, not simply creating from a mono perspective, but creating art on a universal level that transcends geopolitical boundaries, physical spaces, and beyond. I am very attentive and conscious of being inclusive of other cultures and people in all my art, regardless if it is on a canvas or large-scale mural.”

 Chavez, grandson of Cesar Chavez, describes his film as a generational story of how his grandfather’s legacy has been carried throughout his family.

“The primary impetus for the creation of the film was to honor my grandfather's legacy and share the story with audiences,” he said. 

 As he toured the film, he was shocked and surprised by the lack of awareness of Cesar Chavez’s story. Few, it seemed, knew of how a person with a 6th grade education became a figure of Latino empowerment in the country. 

 “In such a tumultuous period, it is important for us to look up to see heroes with higher moral and ethical standards, a reminder of empathy and kindness.”

 Chavez said he hopes audiences will keep an open mind when watching the film.

“It is very uniquely told through my lens, as a grandson. I set out to show a perspective and story that is very different from what is out there and the first of its kind told by a family member.”

 The Community Library is honored to be a part of sharing this film with the community as a means of helping people to better understand César Chavez’s work and how his vision impacts us all, said Martha Williams, programs and education manager. 

 Peter Burke, co-founder of The Spot, noted that the event is “about art, it is about culture, it is about history and honoring those who marched before us and for us. It is about neighbors helping neighbors, community coming together to learn, and maybe, to change.” 

 

 

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