Thursday, March 17, 2011

Olmecas Singing in the Flowers

Olmec Head, de Young Museum
Flickr photo courtesy of The Mindful One
Olemcas en las Flores
Friday, March 18th at 7:00pm
Koret Auditorium, de Young Museum, San Francisco
Free Program

“Olmecas Singing in the Flowers” will gather Bay Area poets and musicians to pay tribute to an ancient Mexican literary form, flor y canto (flower and song). The 1,200-year history of poetic expression from the time of the Toltecs to the time of the Aztecs continues in communities throughout Mexico and the southwest United States. The Nahuatl people of the Americas (central Mexico) revered poets and musicians because of their ability to capture beauty and “truth” (flowers) enhanced by sacred music (songs). The poetry weaves philosophical ideas into social, political, and cultural commentary.

Creating a ceremonial ambiance based on indigenous concepts of cycles and the four cardinal directions, poets Adrian Arias, Leticia Hernandez, Avotcja Jilontrillo, Paul Flores, and Naomi Quiñonez and musician Martin Espino will offer their talents in the tradition of flor y canto. As a special addition, a poem celebrating spring written by legendary Aztec poet Nezahualcóyotl will be performed in Nahuatl, Spanish, and English by several of the poets and special guest artist Jim Berenholtz. Organized by members of the de Young Olmec Advisory Committee, with special thanks to Naomi Quiñonez.

Dr. Naomi Quiñonez is a poet, educator, cultural studies scholar, and cultural worker. She has published three books of poetry, including Hummingbird Dream, The Smoking Mirror, and The Exiled Moon. Quiñonez enjoys producing and organizing collaborative cultural events. She is currently a faculty member at San Francisco State University.

This programs is free with no tickets or reservations. Tickets are required to visit the galleries (free to members).

Special exhibition admission is required to visit Olmec: Colossal Masterworks of Ancient Mexico (free to members).

For more information, please visit the De Young Museum's website.

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