Art in South Phoenix

          Art is a major aspect of the Latino culture. This includes everything from their food, to their businesses, to their Murals. From just touring the city of South Phoenix, who’s population is about 95% Hispanic, I got a feel of the Mexican culture. Everything throughout the city is creative, artistic, and expresses some sort of story.
         One of the major forms of art that caught my attention while touring the city was the Abstinence Mural. The mural displayed vivid colors with words warning about sex before marriage. As James Rojas says in his article titled The Latino Use of Urban Space in East Los Angeles, “ murals are a form of political, religious, and whimsical advertisement in barrios, each expressing different values”. In a way, it is obvious to see that Mexican American’s use art to mark their territory, tell a story, or cover simply cover a dead wall with beautiful symbols and colors.
         Another thing that I noticed was that a lot of the signs on the family owned businesses were painted. The signs were very much different from the traditional block lettering light up signs that we see everywhere, they have more of a creative style to them which makes you take a second glance rather then pass right by. Also, the items in the shops that were being sold were very festive, colorful, and original. I visited a little shopping area and learned that most of the stores had items such as piñatas, colorful blankets and clothing, or decorations that revolved around the Hispanic culture.
         It is very obvious that Mexican American’s value their culture and history through their art. Although it only exists in South Phoenix, it is recognized throughout the world.


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