Takeaways After the Fact – Citizen or Government Active?

As 2017 ended, we did look at a project the American School Foundation’s Repentino. Magazine began unraveling a project of individuals interviewed at the 2017 Art Fair, directly involved with the earthquake of 2017. This was the 48th Art Fair and Repentino. would so their share to redefine what an art magazine means to do for the community, immediate and nation-wide.  Change is possible. This is an extraordinary Art Fair, and I was lucky to be part of ASF to witness this amazing event in past years that brings together an amazing amount of talent together in one place.  Ana Elena Perez Lemus, President of the Parents Association of The American School Foundation, does a great job of going into the details that allow this to be unique.  

I think it is appropriate that the theme was Utopia this year.  As the Art Fair determines to bring a multitude of  individuals, it is not difficult to see how Repentino. Magazine does the same thing, well maybe it is more glances required.  Through the eclectic activities of Open Mic events, Authors Among US events, being supporters of local charity drives, as well as involved in events that do not seem to have anything to do with art, as the above mentioned involvements and social media that explores avenues of author and artist interviews, a closer look is necessary.  In that closer look, you will see that a single club can have the power to find a single network to facilitate, suggest, and motivate individuals that change is possible.  

It takes energy, motivation, and will to want change for students to initiate a project out of thin air, creating something out of nothing, yet, Repentino. as a literary arts magazine continues to redefine how to make impacts that send resounding voice bytes for change.  This is a different type of art. Bringing together  individuals that that represent so many talents, in the form of artists, staff. faculty, administration, school organizations outside of Repentino., individuals within the country, outside the country, it is often easy to forget the impact that is possible.

Within the organization, there is much balancing that causes so many blinders to see what is happening.  With a heavy schedule of homework and assignments that always hover on an academic schedule that differs as an international student, seeing internal changes that impact a club when staff leave, filling those spots, spinning a creative twist on activities, and even the stress of senior staff departing and seeing a legacy of motivation and achievement float into the uncertain future, it is so easy to take for granted the potential and achievements that hover in the international realm, let alone avoiding the stress of day to day activities that it takes to keep an organization unique.  Burnout, stress, and conflict undoubtedly arise, but how those are overcome truly define an organization, and at some point, self versus the public good begin to shift balances once staff are able to step back from what they gave been doing mid year.

In hearing NPR’s segment on looking back at what happened with the 2017 Mexico Earthquake, in questioning what happened to the early warning system, it is refreshing, if not motivating, to see back in November of 2017 many individuals were in a situation to contemplate this question, but to celebrate the role citizens played to support each other when cracks in government seemed to fall short.  In addressing this issue and pushing this information out to the public to challenge and push the government to be allies with citizens, love of country seeps out in volumes.  If students, faculty, and administration can come together in a formal event, and informal vocal events,  and strategize one aspect if improvement needed to shout out to citizens within Mexico and outside of Mexico to hear, so much else is possible,  Puerto Rico, equal rights for women in professional and recreational sectors, art redefined as the art you see but also the art you feel.  Making art real, is a challenge that the staff of Repentino, always tries to tackle, and being vocal is one one artistic way to push out art and have it serve as a common meeting ground for other initiatives for change. It is refreshing to see the frequent blockades, hurdles, and stress that occur in everyday life on the part of students, to put the power of art to reach into society for positive change, and to take events from the past and allow them to be future advents for change as well.

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As the interviews are added and edited, (we have over 40!) we also hope you hear the student voice of possibility, change, and a willingness to work towards a better future for the governments that work with citizens, not just in Mexico, but all over the world.  Add to that a willingness of individuals from all positions, all ages, willing to contribute, and you have a lesson of change that is not confined to borders.  We hope you hear that too.




About Harry Brake

Employee of ASF in Mexico City, Librarian, Media crazy! :)
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