LLAS Spring 2023 Series: What is Muralism? Labor, Social Justice, and Cultural Identity through Visual Storytelling

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Latino/Latin American Studies (LLAS)


On the centennial of the Mexican Muralist movement, Aaron Johnson-Ortiz will share the past, present, and future of Muralism as an art movement and as a social, political, and cultural phenomenon, with specific highlights from Mexican and Latin American history, his own art practice, and Muralism history in Minnesota.

Aaron Johnson-Oritz is a Mexican, Latino, and Mexican-American cultural organizer, arts advocate, and award-winning (Neo)Muralist based in Minnesota. His art focuses on workers’ rights, immigrant rights, Latino culture, and Mexican identity. His “Workers United In Struggle” mural was named the 2018 “Best Mural” in the Twin Cities by City Pages.

Currently, Aaron is Executive Director and Founder of (Neo)Muralismos de México, one of the few public arts organization in the US that is dedicated to revitalizing and reclaiming the Mexican origins of Muralism as an art movement. Aaron is also a founding member of the Mexican Cultural Arts Alliance (MCAA), the only bi-national (US/Mexico) professional development and partnership-building organization for emerging Mexican-focused arts administrators and organizations. Previously, Aaron served as Director of Arts & Cultural Engagement at CLUES (Comunidades Latinas Unidas En Servicio), where he developed Minnesota’s largest Latino-focused arts program.

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