My values as a community based artist are to build and create in community settings that engage community members in a dignified and holistic manner. I believe in authentic collaboration and the autonomy of every individual to envision and build the future they see fit. My tools have been: storytelling, pencil, paper, brushes & paints, and a surface that is accessible to many people.
In collaboration with the African American Roundtable and Metcalfe Community Bridges, I hosted an art build and screenprinting popup for the LiberateMKE Block Party.
Participants were able to engage through art and participatory activities to redistribute the city of Milwaukee's 297 million dollar budget from the Milwaukee Police Department to areas in the community they deem most necessary and important. Community members also answered the question, "Who Keeps You Safe?" through a community banner.
Beauty Opens the Door to Join Us
This mural was completed with neighborhood engagement on the east-facing wall of El Rey foods overlooking the newly opened "Butterfly Park'. Facilitated by Tia Richardson and Jeanette Martín. Formerly a vacant lot at the busy intersection of S. 13th and W. Forest Home Ave, Program Director Juanita Valcarcel of Southside Neighbors Helping Neighbors (SNHN) helped organize this initiative with support from staff and volunteer community leaders. (Milwaukee, WI)
Our first and second sessions were creative, visualizing, and storytelling workshops. They were designed to both create a space for neighbors to learn new things they could appreciate about each other, and to decide together what was most important to them as a theme.
Stitch Community Mural Project
THE UNFINISHED WORK OF THE ANCESTORS IS THE BLUEPRINT FOR MY LIFE
Artist statement: "This STITCH mural is about combating segregation, giving voice to our struggles,
healing through storytelling and using art as an act of resistance... art as an act of liberation!"
Acrylic on plywood panels. 16'x8' (2013). Installed in two locations: Alice's Garden on 20th and Brown and Aztek Inc Tattoo Shop on 1230 S. Cesar Chavez.
Full Project Website: stitchmilwaukee.com/community-mural
La Raza Unida Party - Photo Installation
Martin did archival research on the Raza Unida Party that existed in the late 60's through the 70's. Martin enlarged photographs from the archives and installed them outside one of the oldest buildings of Chicano activism in the state of Wisconsin as a way of bringing archival research to the community.