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Hispanic & Latin/x Exhibit at CSMA

At the Community School of Music and Art, Yen Ospina curated a Hispanic and Latin/x Exhibition that is happening till November 17. The Gallery features 7 People of Color/Latin/x artists from across the U.S. Every first Friday of the month there is a Gallery Night to celebrate the work that is up in the exhibit. The current exhibit is a collaboration with the Cultura-Latino Civic Association curated by Yen Ospina.

Yen Ospina In front of her artwork at CSMA (Photo by Heaven Cuevas/Ithaca Week)

Yen Ospina is a Colombian self-taught artist. She has been a professional doing art for the last 2 years.

Yen Ospina’s work in CSMA. (Photo by Heaven Cuevas/Ithaca Week)

Ospina has done many events and art around Tompkins County including murals in collaboration with Ithaca Murals, hosts an annual Latin/x Fiesta celebrating Latino and Hispanic culture, makers market at PorchFest where she showcases and sell artwork etc. She is also a part of the Latino Civic Association of Tompkins County (LCA).

Ospina explains the importance of community building after joining the LCA and when coordinating events and exhibitions with the rise of the POC population in Ithaca every year,

“It’s just even better because I just meet people that just moved here and since I have a platform here, and I’ve been here for so long and I am a well-known artist people reach out to me,” Ospina said, “they’re like hey like I want to be involved in some way or another and I’m just like yes let’s go let’s do, it lets brainstorm.”

She explained how when she first came to Ithaca, she wanted to prioritize POC artists and the work they do. While curating this exhibit, Ospina explained how she chose the artists.

“The exhibit is based off of seven talented artists all from different backgrounds, and I actually all know them, because when I am out doing a market, or when I am exhibiting an art show, I also like to go to art exhibits to see what they’re showcasing,” she said. “And I ask a lot of questions, and I engage with people, and then I am always trying to seek other artist, so I can support them and give them a platform so they could showcase their talent.”

Cruz Newman is a Venezuelan artist. Newman’s work is also featured within the gallery. She explains her style as vibrant and colorful using mediums such as watercolor.

Cruz Newman at Handwork where she sells her artwork. (Photo by Heaven Cuevas/Ithaca Week)

“My artwork is my passion and I want it to be joyful,” she said. Newman explained with so many issues in the world, “I just want something vibrant, to bring happiness.”



With her work up in CSMA she explained how important it is to be Latina doing work like this for the community, especially with Ithaca being a predominantly white area.

“Yeah, I love the idea of showcasing the work of Latinos and POC I think it’s important and to make them obvious in the community” she said, “to show to the community that we are supporting something positive and that will enrich the Ithaca community.”

When Newman first moved to Ithaca, she wanted to be an artist and heard about Ospina and was excited.

“She gave me an inspiration and motivation to start,” Newman said. “She has helped me out to figure out what to do and how to do it also as she is being very a good example for me because she’s very driven and she is very motivated and seeing what she has done has motivated me to keep going,” Newman said.”

Newman’s artwork up at CSMA (Photo by Heaven Cuevas/Ithaca Week)


Loreto Molina is a self-taught Chilean artist also featured in the gallery. Her artwork is described as an exploration of naturalness of women, through the medium of embroidery pastel watercolor and acrylic paint.


Loreto Molina (Photo by Loreto Molina)



“I aim to connect with my Chilean roots and pay homage to the rich tradition of arpilleras, a form of embroidery art created by women,” Molina said. “By doing so, I seek to raise awareness about women’s freedom, safety, happiness, and the transformative power of motherhood.”

Molina expressed her gratitude for being able to be a part of the CSMA gallery along with all 6 other artists, and the acknowledgment of Latino/Hispanic Heritage.


Loreto Molina Artwork up in CSMA (Photo by Heaven Cuevas/Ithaca Week)

“Our heritage not only adds depth and authenticity to our artistic endeavors but also serves as a powerful reminder of the importance of cultural diversity and inclusivity,” Molina said.

Yen Ospina said how she will continue to do this work every year for her and the community because that is truly what she’s passionate about.

“Her ability to capture the essence of our culture and convey it through her art is truly admirable,” Molina said. “I am in awe of her talent and absolutely love the impact she has on our community. Yen Ospina’s work is not only a testament to her artistic prowess but also a powerful representation of the beauty and richness of our Latin heritage,”Molina said.”

Check out this interview!

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