‘We are Latinos’: The first week of Hispanic Heritage Month brings celebrations to North Central Florida

Published: Sep. 21, 2022 at 11:17 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - The Marion Cultural Alliance is bringing a taste of Hispanic culture through an art exhibit.

The gallery features pieces from six different artists, including Colombian painter Cristina Rodriguez.

“I feel super proud of the roots that we have,” shared Rodriguez. “Those of us who are here exhibiting here, we are Latinos.”

She told us how digging deep into her roots allowed her to create these three pieces. She said painting large formats captures a lot of attention.

“I painted those faces because I always love to paint women, more than anything,” said Rodriguez. “Because we are the ones who shape the world.”

Visitors hope that other people will celebrate the contributions of the growing Hispanic community.

“To come to Ocala, and walk in some doors and say ‘look at all this culture’, I think is amazing,” stated Nola Doracle. “I think it’s definitely a step in the right direction.”

Students from the University of Florida are also celebrating the first week of Hispanic Heritage Month with “Art Fest”— one of the ten events throughout the month, that also aims to showcase their culture.

“Celebrate us as Latinos, that we are creative and we do a bunch of stuff,” stated artist Ari Uberti. “We are here showcasing our art or the abilities that we have.”

Students gathered to paint and tie dye. Artists told us they are here to embrace their culture with others.

“Latino-inspired events to gather the community that is from Latin America, which is something that I’m trying to stay connected to,” shared Valeria Rosich.

The student-run series of events will happen until October 14th. The Marion Culture Alliance exhibit will be open until October 1st.

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