Led by the The Alliance for California Traditional Arts (ACTA) and The California Endowment’s Building Healthy Communities- Boyle Heights, the Boyle Heights Cultural Treasures project is a pilot program that works to identify people, groups, organizations, places and events valued by people in the community.
In April, a task force of project leaders, community volunteers and members of six organizations including East Los Angeles Community Corporation, Brooklyn and Boyle, Proyecto Jardin, Weingart East Los Angeles YMCA, Volunteers of America and CASA 0101, began outreach efforts to compile an inventory of cultural treasures in the area.
Through interviews and surveys, the project has identified over 100 treasures to date, including artist Ofelia Esparza, poet/musician Ruben Guevara, the annual Día De los Muertos event, and places such as El Mercadito and Mariachi Plaza.
According to ACTA Executive Director Amy Kitchener, the on-going project does not have a curator. Instead, she says, the process has been very democratic—where any nomination that contributes to the well-being, sense of place, community cohesiveness and identity of Boyle Heights is welcomed.
“The point is to reflect on the value of the people, places, organizations and events that bring the community together…and that are a powerful force in transforming the community and changing the narrative of what a healthy community is,” said Kitchener.
Saturday’s event will celebrate a number of cultural assets through performances, video screenings, workshops and food. Following the event, the Ovarian Pyscos Bike Brigade will lead a bike tour through some of the identified cultural treasures in Boyle Heights.
While events, videos, a map and a website highlighting the treasures are all in development, the project’s leaders continue soliciting submissions from community members and hope to connect those assets to future plans of Building Healthy Communities- Boyle Heights.
What do you think is a Boyle Heights cultural treasure?
Share your suggestions at the event, in our comments section below, or by filling out this survey in English and in Spanish
Boyle Heights Cultural Treasures
Saturday, July 28, 20102 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Self Help Graphics and Art
1300 E. 1st St, Los Angeles, Ca 90033
*Bike tour leaves at 1pm