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ALMA Creates

ALMA Creates is a comprehensive six-week youth art fellowship designed for Latino/a/e/x LGBTQIA+ artists aged 17 to 24. The program aims to foster individual artistic skills, promote community building, and exploring the significance of art as a tool for advocacy. Participants receive personalized mentoring, participate in workshops, gain new insights into LGBTQIA+ history and related artistic and cultural expression, and collaborate on a culminating art piece that is showcased at the program's end. The program encourages and embraces artists working in various art categories including but not limited to:

  • Dance / Singing

  • Performance

  • Poetry / Writing

  • Fashion

  • Visual Painter/Drawer/ sculpting

  • Graphic Design / Illustration

  • Photography / Videography

Applications for the next cohort will open in Spring 2025!

The Spring 2024 ALMA Creates is a collaboration with PrEP4Teens, an arts-focused community mobilization and social marketing project developed by teens to raise awareness of PrEP and other sexual health options among their peers .

Spring 2024 Art Fellows

ALLAN AYALA (he/she/they)

A queer Chicano artist/filmmaker born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. Growing up on the northwest side in Belmont Cragin to a single immigrant mother, Allan attended the Chicago High School for the Arts, specializing in Creative Writing. Allan has thrown art shows in apartments, dyed their hair every color, filmed multiple independent productions, been banned from Village Discount, dropped out of a Zionist institution, hosted a rave, as well as authoring their own zine Street Rats. You can reach Allan at streetrats5000@gmail.com or on Instagram @allan.aaaa. 

ANGEL CAMPOS (he/they)

Angel Campos is an artist from south side Chicago offering fun, bright, imaginative

pieces that play with the ideas of being perceived as different or alien. Angel grew up very

private and timid working on art for personal enjoyment but wants to focus on community work.

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ELI COLON (he/him)

A queer, trans, neurodiverse Salvadoran-American who creates ceramics, comics, illustrations, zines, and occasionally songs. In his multimedia art, Elí incorporates elements from natural and urban landscapes of his native Texas and Chicago, symbols from his religious upbringing, visual culture from Central America and Latine communities, and celebrations of queer bodies. He is a former Art Institute of Chicago Curatorial Fellow, and his work has been featured in college publications and exhibitions as well as the horror erotica anthology Hallowzine. He co-created The Mixed Review, an anthology zine of art and interviews by multiracial college students.

JOCELYN MIRANDA (she/they)

Jocelyn Miranda is an Aro Ace photographer and artist. Since the beginning of high school, they always wanted to take a photography class, but their school didn’t offer any. One day, they came across the school newsletter and discovered an opportunity to become a FreshLens student, a program that taught youngsters everything about photography. Through FreshLens they have been able to discover a joy, passion, and a part of themselves that they never knew existed. Now, they wish to use their photography skills to advocate for underrepresented students and POC communities through their work and to spread awareness. By joining Alma Creates x Prep 4 Teens, it is their first step to vouch for the Latinx Queer communities and use their voice to represent how the youth feels about the matter and to challenge the status quo.

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ADDIS QUITERIO (they/them)

A self taught Queer Latine writer and theatrical performer. They specialize in writing poetry, short stories, and scripts that focus on mental health, and cultural/youth experiences such as immigration, advocacy, and injustices. At a very young age, they used writing and acting on stage as a way to cope with mental health and personal experiences. Some of their major influences in their art, is with their experiences with mental health such as being diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and Complex Post-traumatic stress disorder at a young age. They believe in raising awareness for mental health in the Latinè community as it is not easily recognized by older generations. With their work in advocacy, in 2022 they helped create a film. They are also passionate

about working with youth and are studying at Illinois State University for an undergraduate degree in Theater and English education. With their passion for working with youth, they are also working as an internship site supervisor at After School Matters where they plan to work with instructors and specialists for youth development.

XOCHITL RAMIREZ (she/her)

A queer Latina, primarily a performing artist and clay sculptor.  They look to explore their sexuality, culture, self-love, and their take on feminism through their work. From working on youth and intergen ensembles to creating clay and glass sculptures.  Embarking on their artistic journey much later in life than most, they look forward to being versatile with different mediums and art styles, explicitly going from a very cute approach to a more grotesque style.

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David is a self-taught artist, identifying as a gay, cis-gender Latino male, and community engagement advocate. His artwork often speaks to the Latinx LGBTQ+ community. David also mentors Chicago teens through his program, “BLOOM.”

Facilitator 

Previous Art Fellows 

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