An Evening of Texas Mexican Food, Film and Meaning

If you are near Houston, Texas we hope you will join us for an art happening that integrates film and food.  Hosted by The Aurora Picture Show, this evening event explores and celebrates the aesthetic ways in which both film and food serve to promote Latino, Mexican American, Chicano* identity, contestation and invention.

“An Evening of Texas Mexican Food, Film and Meaning”

Willie Varela, 1988

Video art will be integrated with the dining experience.  During a 9-course chef’s tasting dinner, a giant screen will show video art representing the wide expressive range of contemporary Chicana and Chicano cinema. The videos explore ideas of identity and relationships.

-Laura Varela and Vaago Weiland’s “Enlight Tents” links the Alamo with Native American history using a series of visual overlays.
-Ray Santisteban screens a new work that lyrically portrays the urgency of Sandra Cisneros’ latest book “Have You Seen Marie?”
-Adán Medrano’s “I Work The Land” is a video meditation on the noble, arduous work of migrant farmworkers.
-Willie Varela presents the avant-garde side of Chicano films in his at times gruesome, “Detritus.”

The dinner menu features the cuisine of indigenous Texas Natives who over time became today’s Mexican American community. A fact not widely known: this cuisine has roots dating back over 9,000 years in and around Houston, San Antonio, Corpus Christi and the Rio Grande Valley. “It is enjoyed in Texas Mexican American homes,” says Medrano. “Aromatic and subtle, this food is part of our identity.”

Medrano, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, will be joined in the kitchen by fellow CIA alumni chefs, Kevin Babbit from San Antonio and Todd Martin from Nashville. The dishes include Gulf coast shrimp, crab, cactus with chiles, gorditas, chipotle albóndigas, and a variety of meats flavored with aromatic herbs like Mexican Oregano and the anise-scented Yerbaniz.

Tequila, agua fresca and beer from Saint Arnold Brewery will complement the contemporary food and film performance. Seating is limited to 60 guests and advance purchasing is strongly encouraged.

Adán M. Medrano is the founder of the San Antonio CineFestival, the first and currently longest-running Latino film festival in the US. An award-winning documentary producer, he is also a trained working Chef and a participant in the Leadership Forum, “Latin Flavors, American Kitchens,” convened by the Culinary Institute of America. Texas Tech University Press is soon to publish his book, “Authentic Texas Mexican Cuisine.”

DATE:  March 28, 2013
TIME:  6:30 PM
PLACE:  The Aurora Picture Show
2442 Bartlett Street
Houston, TX 77098
PURCHASE TICKETS ONLINE HERE:  $40 for members, $60 for non-members

*Chicano is the name that is selected by Mexican Americans as a statement of self-identity.  Among its many connotations is one that affirms being culturally distinct while at the same time being at home in the land where they were born, the US.  It was used during the Chicano movement of the 1960’s and 1970’s and is associated with political action that improves the economic, social, educational and cultural lives of the Mexican American community and wider humane community.

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