East End District Receives Gift of New Chicano Public Art in Honor of Victims of COVID-19

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East End District Receives Gift of New Chicano Public Art in Honor of Victims of COVID-19

Ceremonial Metate in the East End District, Houston, Texas

The sculpture, created by Chicano artists Jesus Cantu Medel, M.Ed., with the help of Joseph Cavazos, is intended to honor the art community members who lost their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic in Houston.

The East End District has added a ceremonial-type, mega-sized metate to the award-winning Esplanade by Navigation. The sculpture, created by Chicano artists Jesus Cantu Medel, M.Ed., with the help of Joseph Cavazos, is intended to honor the art community members who lost their lives during the COVID-19 pandemic in Houston.

A metate is a rectangular stone with a tripod bone base of basalt stone, typically used to grind corn kernels to make tortillas; according to prof. Medel reflects the ceremonial metate he created Pre-Columbian values ​​and traditions of ancient Mexico and Central America to emphasize respect for individuals and artists.

The metat cost $18,000 and took three months to build. The Houston Arts Alliance awarded the funds with the support of the “Museo Guadalupe Aztlan.” The public is invited to attend vigils and public events at the site.

East End Houston community members are invited to a ribbon cutting ceremony on Sunday, December 18, 2022.

About the Artist

Jesus Cantu Medel is an award-winning artist born and raised on the north side of Houston. He is a second generation Latin American with roots in Guanajuato and Tamaulipas, Mexico. Jesus is also a product of the University of Houston – Central Campus, where he majored in Psychology and earned a Masters in Education. His thesis focused on art education for the neo-needy in the Chicano community. Jesus also followed studies in the Colegio de Mexico sponsored by the “Becas Para Aztlan”.

About the East End District

The East End District was established in 1999. Its mission is to revitalize the infrastructure and image of the District, attract more businesses and increase economic activity in the area. Improvements include new infrastructure, beautification, security and public safety, and workforce development. The East End District covers 16 square miles and is bordered by Clinton Drive to the north, Loop 610 to the east, Telephone Road, and Interstate 45 to the south, and the Houston Belt and Terminal Railroad to Highway59 to the west. Visit http://www.eastenddistrict.com to learn more about the East End District.

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