Marco Flores (2012)
Undocuqueer Art Making: Healing Practices Through Self-Expression
“I am grateful for those first moments of consciousness, always born from a living experience of injustice turned to righteous rage, that first experience of genuine collectivism, that blessed epiphany of art-inspired action.”- Cherrie Moraga, A Xicana Codex of Changing Consciousness
Marco’s Stronach Baccalaureate Prize project, “Undocuqueer Art Making,” intends to increase awareness of the intersections in LGBT and immigrant identity by disrupting conventional ways of thinking about undocumented immigrant youth. His project uses the arts as a vehicle for healing by making room for complex immigrant identities through a space of creativity. It serves as a catalyst towards understanding the significance of testimonios through a series of creative art making workshops. With his “Undocuqueer Art Making” project, Marco seeks to create a form of collective consciousness by engaging in artistic forms of self-expression through story-telling, creative writing, photography, costume design, altar making and other creative hands-on cultural practices. His project considers the mergence of queer identity and undocumented status to gain a collective perspective towards creating community. These are artistic efforts to learn and give back by providing practices to alternative histories of existence, and to create a place of carrying theory in praxis through the creative. It is a space to share stories that can nourish collective empowerment by conveying every day realities as sites of transformation and a process to heal each other.
Marco Antonio Flores graduated in 2012 with a degree in Gender and Women's Studies. He was born in Mexico and grew up in Southern California. Marco is interested in testimonios that explore sentiments of belonging that shape understandings of home(land). His work navigates the complexities of displacement and memory in relation to the body. As a Haas Scholar (2011-12), he drew from the testimonios of queer undocumented immigrant Latino youth to expose the collisions present in the intersections between queer identity and undocumented status. Ultimately Marco hopes to create a 'theory in praxis' between his community activism and scholarly practice by engaging in creative forms of self-expression. He intends to continue his interests of exploring the arts as a medium of healing and empowerment.