A year-long celebration from Mexico near and far.
In 2014, HotHouse was awarded a prestigious International Cultural Exchange grant from the John D. and Catherine T. Mac Arthur Foundation to create the Son Jarocho International Exchange Project. This unique year-long project fostered the sharing of cultural traditions between Afro-Mexican musicians living in the State of Veracruz, Mexico and semi-professional artists residing in Mexican communities throughout Chicago. Via the exchange, HotHouse organized dozens of public events (concerts, workshops, panel discussions, and fandangos) including programs at the National Mexican Museum of Art, the African Festival of the Arts, and the City of Chicago’s Summerdance. A key feature of the exchange was the week-long jarana making workshop in our rural art-making studio in Lakeside, Michigan. There, master laudero Andres Flores lived as an artist-in-residence leading attendees in a step- by- step process in instrument building. The entire year-long exchange was an extraordinary process of engaging second- generation Mexican immigrants with their artistic counterparts. Via the exchange, HotHouse organized 33 events (concerts, workshops, panel discussions and fandangos) including at the MAGI Cultural Art Center, at the National Mexican Museum of Art, at Martyrs, at the African Festival of the Arts, at the Old Town School of Folk Music, at Summerdance and St. Bronislava Church. In total, 125 artists participated and 1,317 people attended the programs.