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Connected Diaspora

Connected Diaspora
Central American Visuality in the Age of Social Media

September 22, 2020 - December 12, 2020

Connected Diaspora


Connected Diaspora: Central American Visuality in the Age of Social Media casts light on a new generation of artists who visually reflect on U.S Central American lives and experiences in the era of social media. These new voices from the Central American diaspora have built a creative community that transcends state lines and borders.

Their practices range from delicate ceramic sculptures to large scale paintings to digital art—exploring images of displacement, war, and trauma. Contemplations on everyday life, nature, and architecture, coupled with insights on invisibility and empowerment, are all manifested in this visual assembly. Central Americans make up the third largest U.S Latinx group—a statistic that is not equally reflected when referencing Latinx art. Beyond news articles, Central Americans in the diaspora are a creative force leading the way to a more expansive discourse on Latinx Art.

Curated by Veronica Melendez

Featuring artwork by: Eddy Leonel Aldana, Galileo Gonzalez, Kim LaVonne, Glenda Lissette, Dennissé Carlota Nieto Zelaya, Jessy DeSantis, Xiomara Garay, Celea Guevara, Kimberly Benavides, Veronica Melendez, Elizabeth Fernanda Rodriguez, Kiara Machado, Julia Mata, Juan Madrid, Isidra Sabio, Paulino Celestino Mejia, Keith L Torres, Johanna Toruño

Co-sponsored by the School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, the Department of Spanish and Portuguese at UMD, as well as La Casa de la Cultura de El Salvador in Washington, DC


Keynote Speaker: Mauricio E. Ramírez

Artist Panel 2 featuring Jessy DeSantis, Celea Guevara, Kimberly LaVonne, and curator Veronica Melendez

Artist Panel 3 with La Casa de la Cultura de El Salvador featuring artists Beatriz Cortez , Muriel Hasbun, and Kiara Machado

Connected Diaspora Virtual Programs

Opening Instagram Live curator's talk and Artist Panel 1 with curator Veronica Melendez, Johana Toruño, Galileo Gonzalez, and Paulino Mejia


on Instagram @stampgalleryumd

Keynote Speaker: Mauricio E. Ramírez, artist, curator and Ph.D Candidate in Latin American and Latino Studies Department at UC Santa Cruz with an emphasis in Visual Studies

THURSDAY, SEPT. 24, 5:00-6:15 PM
Online through Youtube:

Speaker Biography:
Mauricio E. Ramírez is an artist, curator, and Ph.D. Candidate in the Latin American and Latino Studies Department at UC Santa Cruz with an emphasis in Visual Studies. An expert on Latinx public murals and visual art in the San Francisco Bay Area, Mauricio’s dissertation, “Painting Central America: U.S. Central American Visual Art of San Francisco,” explores the visual expressions and solidarity that emerged in San Francisco’s Mission District as a response to the civil wars in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua beginning in the 1980s. His research sheds light on the history of Central American art and activism, the emerging 1.5 and second-generation U.S. Central American artists, and the intersections of Latinx solidarity with Central Americans. Mauricio is currently a University of California President’s Pre-Professoriate Fellow and a SOMArts curatorial resident, co-curating the upcoming exhibition, CARAVANA: Mobilizing Central American Art (1984–Present), in San Francisco, March 2021.

Artist Panel 2 featuring Jessy DeSantis, Celea Guevara, Kimberly LaVonne, and curator Veronica Melendez
Thursday, OCT. 1, 5:00-6:15 PM
Livestreamed to Youtube at

Artist Panel 3 with La Casa de la Cultura de El Salvador featuring artists Beatriz Cortez Muriel Hasbun, and Kiara Machado
Thursday, OCT. 8, 5:00 - 7:00 PM
Livestreamed to Youtube at and on Facebook

Zine Making Workshop with La Horchata Zine
Thursday, OCT. 15, 5:00 - 6:15 PM
UMD Students Only- registration at

Virtual DJ Exhibition Closing Dance Party
Friday, NOV. 20, 6:00 - 8:00 PM
Zoom link at


Land Acknowledgement

Every community owes its existence and strength to the generations before them, around the world, who contributed their hopes, dreams, and energy into making the history that led to this moment. Some were brought here against their will, some were drawn to migrate from their homes in hope of a better life, and some have lived on this land for more generations than can be counted. Truth and acknowledgment are critical in building mutual respect and connections across all barriers of heritage and difference. 

At the Stamp Gallery, we believe it is important to create dialogue to honor those that have been historically and systemically disenfranchised. So, we acknowledge the truth that is often buried: We are on the ancestral lands of the Piscataway People, who were among the first in the Western Hemisphere. We are on indigenous land that was stolen from the Piscataway People by European colonists. We pay respects to Piscataway elders and ancestors. Please take a moment to consider the many legacies of violence, displacement, migration, and settlement that bring us together here today.

We invite you to learn more about the native land you are on at

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