Nine years and counting …

Contenidos artísticos
Photo: Contenidos artísticos

I have good reason to celebrate because my most desired professional project, Contenidos Artísticos, emerged nine years ago just this month. Therefrom I have proposed to investigate, design, produce, manage, direct, program and disseminate projects with an emphasis on the performing arts.

A little history. After 10 years of working in a public institution of culture, I ventured into an independent working life and realized that I needed to build an administrative and fiscal infrastructure, and a firm that could represent me and other colleagues I was collaborating with. I named it thinking about what I was doing and what I wanted to do: generating artistic content.

I was born in León, Guanajuato, but five years ago I moved to Chicago, Illinois, where I brought the firm thinking of achieving a permanent cultural exchange between Mexico and the United States. And ever since its foundation in February 2012, Contenidos Artísticos has been transforming and expanding its horizons.

I decided to celebrate with the launch of a Mentoring Program for women who are entering the cultural management field of the performing arts. I am going to give free advice to women from Mexico and the United States specifically from the BIPOC community, that is, blacks, indigenous people and people of color (including Latinxs as well as Asian women). I will put them in contact with specialists and colleagues who promote their development.

So my way of commemorating involves contributing to professionalize the cultural sector and assume my social responsibility. This program will be permanent and anyone who is interested in getting my support and feedback can contact me directly: cristinavazquez@contenidosartistico.c

In addition, I scheduled three activities for the ninth anniversary of Contenidos Artísticos through Facebook Live two talks and a puppet workshop for children. The first conversation took place on February 16 with producer Leah Keith to discuss How does the performing arts industry function in America?

The role of the performing arts and women within the creative industries will be the subject of the second talk in which my guests will be, economist Ernesto Piedras and international cultural manager Alesha Mercado, on February 25 at 6:00 p.m. (CST), 19 hours (EST) and 16 hours (PST).

For children, I will offer the Puppets and Shadows workshop by Manual Cinema, a US multimedia company characterized by its handmade puppets and the combination of cinematographic techniques with innovative music and sounds to create powerful visual stories for both scene and screen. On Saturday 27 at 12 noon (CST), 1 pm (EST) and 10 am (PST).

The Bridge, which has been my publishing house, in which I publish this opinion column twice a month, in English and Spanish, to reflect my work of more than two decades dedicated to the cultural development of Mexico and its international projection, could not be left out of the celebration.

This portal, which emerged from the initiative of two talented and experienced Mexican journalists Gabriel Ramírez and Cynthia Basulto, will broadcast a series of one minute video profiles in which Latinx women will speak about their achievements in the performing arts.

Among the participants are the cultural managers Claudia Norman, Ireri Mugica, Erandi Fajardo, Franky Piña, Mercedes Caxaj and myself, as well as cultural journalist Catalina María Johnson, programmer Katia Nilo and Anna Amadei, vice president of Elsie Management, agency for artistic representation.

One of my greatest achievements in these nine years has been my appointment, in January 2020, as the first Mexican woman to be part of the Board of Directors of the Association of Performing Arts Professionals (APAP).

My work at APAP has focused on the inclusion of a greater number of Latinxs as members of this association and also as participants in the annual conference that the organization holds based in New York every January, its latest 64th edition, being held virtually.

One of my main purposes, on the Board of Directors of APAP, is to encourage the presentation of Mexican solo artists and groups in the United States to reach audiences interested in seeing quality productions that go beyond folklore.

I now receive training from APAP in the policy of Racial Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (REDI). This approach arose in the United States in the face of the recognition of racial discrimination and white supremacy, in a multicultural environment, in search of a society where everyone can participate and prosper. Moving from dialogue and intention to action, by listening and taking into account the variety of ideas and values

I am currently studying the Postgraduate Course in International Cultural Cooperation and Management at the University of Barcelona, which is linked to REDI, as it is based on the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (2005), which at the same time, it is committed to achieving the goals set in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of the United Nations Agenda for 2030, such as gender equality, the reduction of inequalities, peace and justice

For this reason, at Contenidos Artísticos I start from an inclusive approach, since interculturality and the gender perspective run transversally in my work. I open routes to recognize and value diversity. Cultural exchange sustains my artistic programming and my foundation is collaborative work.

In these nine years I have worked with the National Institute of Fine Arts and Literature (INBAL) the Mexican National Dance Company, National Opera Company and the National Theater Coordination. And since 2016 I have collaborated permanently with the Cultural Institute of León in various programming and production projects, such as the León National Book Fair (FENAL) and the International Contemporary Art Festival (FIACmx).

I have worked with Fuse, based in Italy, with Colombian company Sankofa Danzafro, the Tania Pérez-Salas Company, poet Rojo Córdova, light artist Víctor Zapatero, with Manual Cinema and Laleget Danza, among many other groups and soloists.

I hope you can be part of some of the commemorative activities that I have prepared with effort and heart and that you wish, together with me, a long life to Contenidos Artísticos towards its first decade celebration.

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