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Mujer: The Force Within

A Celebration Of Women Artists At Casa Familiar In San Ysidro

Above: "Toilet Painting" by Nicole Waszak

Aired 3/12/12 on KPBS Midday Edition.


Leticia Gomez Franco, curator and gallery director.

Sonia Lopez-Cahvez, artist.

Kinsee Morlan, writer San Diego CityBeat and jury member for last year's show.


Women's History Month is being celebrated in various ways around San Diego including Mujer: The Force Within, an art exhibit at The Front at Casa Familiar in San Ysidro, dedicated to the work of San Diego's women artists. Celebrating it's fifth year in the south bay is the Dia de La Mujer art show Mujer: The Force Within, this year it featuring 27 artists and 40 paintings and photographs.

For the past four years The Front in San Ysidro has been the site of one of the biggest Dia de la Mujer (International Woman's Day) celebration in San Diego. Showcasing 45 participating visual and performing artists, the celebration has included an art exhibition as well spoken word, music and theatrical performances, and a crafts marketplace. Last year, Anya Gallacio, Jamex de la Torre and CityBeat's Kinsee Morlan served on the panel for the very first juried exhibit. This year, the jury included three figures in local art: Larry Baza of Noel-Baza Fine Art, Gwen Gomez from the San Diego Museum of Art and Ava Ordorica, creative director at La Casa del Tunel cultural arts center in Tijuana.

"Cherry Blossom" by Sonia Lopez-Chavez

Above: "Cherry Blossom" by Sonia Lopez-Chavez

One of the artists featured this year is Sonia Lopez-Chavez. Her acrylic on canvas, "Cherry Blossom," was selected as the image to represent the show on the flyers. Lopez-Chavez was born in Guanajuato Mexico but raised in San Diego. She says she "started painting when I was in the second grade. Art came in and out of my life for a while. I finally decided to take art seriously about a year and a half ago. I shifted my focus when I realized that not everyone is blessed with talent. I never attended art school."

This is the third time Lopez-Chavez is participating in the Mujer show. She is currently preparing for her first solo show in April.

Casa Familiar has as its mission statement: "“The mission of Casa Familiar allows the dignity, power, and worth within individuals and families to flourish, by enhancing the quality of life through education, advocacy, service programming, housing and community economic development.”

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