The Hue Music and Arts Festival that took place yesterday in Coachella was a beautiful demonstration of all the talent that the young Eastern Valley has to offer. In addition to three music stages and healthy food vendors, there were art installations that were designed and built by the High School students in the nearby area.
I had the opportunity to check them out myself and I was really, truly impressed by what I saw. Not only was each and every piece on display very well executed, as you could see the time, thought and effort put into each one, but they were also thought provoking.
There was one in particular that stood out and I had the opportunity to interview the artist that made it happen…
INTERVIEW: Valeria Garcia-Pineda
Installation Artist for the Hue Festival
How old are you?
I am 16 years old. Sunday, the day after the festival, I’ll be turning 17.
Where did you grow up?
I have grown up primarily in the eastern Coachella Valley.
Describe your art installation at the Hue Fest.
Well, it consists of several rows in the resemblance to an agricultural field growing cabbages or something
of that sort, only I’m growing brains. So, you’ll find these oversize spray painted brains made of insulating foam, each surrounded by its leaves to give the appearance of brains growing in a field.
How did you think of this?
Where I live, you see fields everywhere. In fact, there’s a beautiful, lush, lettuce field right across from my school. I admire it all the time. When they asked us what we wanted to make, I guess I was just thinking of that field because I had just came from school. Then I thought it would be cool to grow weird things on it, and then I thought: minds!
What does it represent to you?
I think it might be a compilation of all the observations I’ve had regarding my people. As I am surrounded by agriculture, I suppose or at least it seems like that’s the only value others give us, and we begin to believe it ourselves. Why are we forgetting who we, as Mexican immigrants are, about our ancestry’s value and strive for knowledge? Why is my generation only absorbing the hollow, materialistic fantasy we encounter in this country? It seems as if we are stuck in the middle as we try to assimilate to American culture, and are instantly attracted to the flashy pop culture with, often erroneous ideals. As a result, we fail to recognize American value for education and feel the necessity of discarding our own culture, which includes this same value. I believe we should never negate who we are, neither should we neglect our own. We focus so much on cultivating for others. My question is: well, what about our people? My mom always says that one must first raise and feed one’s own children before trying to do this with others’. I think it’s time to be reborn. It’s time to cultivate minds.
How has working on the Hue Fest expanded your mind?
The Hue Fest has let me express myself when most times my words can’t. It has let me work with and understand others better.
How is the Hue Fest bettering your community?
It is bringing us together in a safe place where we can have fun and enjoy the local talent in the music and arts scene. The Coachella Valley is experiencing a growing wave of artistic venues, such as the La Quinta and Palm Springs Arts Festivals; we’re just an addition to it in representation of the Eastern Valley.
What are you most looking forward to at Hue Fest, aside from your own project?
I am really looking into discovering different types of music, all in one place. Also, I’m excited for the cultural activites, such as the jewelry making. I love jewelry.
p.s. Happy 17th Birthday Valeria!!!!!