I am not a Latina. I am a middle-aged white guy whose salsa dancing embarrasses my Venezuelan-born wife. But because she is a Latina, and because my teen-aged daughter is half Latina, I take more than passing interest in how popular culture portrays Latinas. And these days I’m annoyed, because the most popular Latina image out there is, well, almost as embarrassing as my salsa dancing.
It’s an image, in fact, that represents a setback for Latinas.
Back in the late 1990‘s at the original NORMAN’S restaurant in Coral Gables we had a young man who became our Lunch Chef named Eliecer Garcia. Like many young chefs he was very interested in cuisines from all over and when we talked about what to put on our lunch menu his ideas ranged from France to Hong Kong. I loved that but sometimes I’d say, “Eliecer. I want you to show me flavors your Cuban Grandmother would make and then we can twist them a little. Okay? Why don’t you show me how she would cook with … oh… boniato for instance? And then we’ll go from there.”
The All Florida Juried Competition and Exhibition opening reception recently at the Boca Museum of Art drew in a packed, frenzied crowd to its 62nd-annual showcase featuring 149 multimedia works. But it was the overheard exclamations of “That’s disgusting!” and “I can’t even watch this!” that stood out during the evening’s discourse.
For those in film school, the project is like a crash course and a final exam, jam packed into one restless weekend.
This is the Miami edition of the 48 Hour Film Project, an international event that gets play from local filmmakers from Israel and Johannesburg to Las Vegas, Nevada. The one constant -- you get 48 hours to complete a short film from scratch.