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Arts & Life

From Elvis to Aztec legends: Black velvet painting exhibit displayed in Mexicantown

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A black velvet painting.

Turning shame into pride.

That’s the idea behind an exhibit of black velvet paintings. It’s called “Black Velvet: A Rasquache Aesthetic,” and it’s happening at the Latino Cultural Center in Detroit's Mexicantown.

Elena Herrada, a community activist in Detroit and co-curator of the exhibit, joined Stateside to discuss how she and her co-curators came up with the idea for the exhibit, the history of black velvet paintings and their association with Mexican-American families, and why the exhibit owes its existence to contributors from across the state.

Listen above.

“Black Velvet: A Rasquache Aesthetic” will be on display at the Latino Cultural Center at the Mexicantown Welcome Center on Bagley in Detroit until April 15. Then the exhibit travels to Saginaw, Grand Rapids and Adrian.

Support for arts and culture coverage comes in part from the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs.

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