September 15, 2011

Viva America! SUNY Empire State College Celebrates Hispanic Heritage

40th Anniversary Logo

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, SUNY Empire State College’s Metropolitan Center will host “Viva America!,” an exhibition by current students, alumni and guest artists.

The opening reception takes place Thursday, Oct. 6 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Livingston Gallery, 6th floor at 177 Livingston St. in downtown Brooklyn. Raul Manzano, college faculty mentor, is the curator of the exhibition. The exhibition will be on display from Oct.1 through Dec. 20, Monday through Thursday from noon to 5 p.m.

“With the exhibition ‘Viva America!,’ SUNY Empire State College proudly celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month and at the same time showcases the artistic and creative talent of the college community,” said college President Alan R. Davis. “Sharing diversity of artistic expression, ethnicity and culture goes to the heart of academic excellence and well reflects the college as an institution that is open to creative learning and expression.”

Randall Barquero artwork

Randall Barquero's trompe l’oeil .

About the Artists:
Airbrush artist Randall Barquero embeds his classical training with unconventional technology and trompe-l’oeil technique to create a highly realistic self-portrait that can fool even the most discriminating art authority.

Art for Alejandra Delfin takes a personal note. Through her work she brings awareness about life in the communities, the educational system, and as an activist herself. In her print titled, “Genetically Modified,” she raises consciousness about the alteration of food production.

In response to the traditionally opaque canvas, as well as the predominantly male depiction of form and experience throughout the history of Western art, Ana Garces Kiley transforms the human body into a magical realist vessel for embodying the archetypes of death, desire and the collective unconscious – those very things that make us most human and most enigmatic.

Cristina Guzman’s pencil drawing depicts reflections of past and present memories. In delicate shading and forms, she invites the viewer to channel their own experiences.

Richard Garet’s SONOCROME 1, SRN 4054, is a digital print that emerged from the exploration of optics and light in a moving image setting. Although the print belongs to a larger body of work and is part of an installation, it also can be appreciated and considered, as an autonomous and independent piece.

Through a meticulous process of sorting, cutting and crocheting plastic bags, Antonia A. Perez creates a wall sculpture that functions as a stand-alone piece as well as site-specific work, giving a new life to recycled material.

Dora Riomayor’s collages are often mistaken for photographs. However, upon closer inspection, the viewer discovers that the image is made up of magazine pages that are cut, torn and glued onto the page. Her work conveys a sense of serenity, tranquility and peace along with an element of surprise.

Self-taught artist Jose Rios conveys in his paintings multifaceted aspects of his life, from being a homeless person to a contemporary storyteller. Valentina Suarez’s canvas painted with bold colors and forms depicts images of a pre- and post- Columbian conquest of the New World.


Antonia Perez artwork

Antonia Perez wall sculpture

 “The artists hail from diverse regions of the Americas bringing together a coalition of emerging and established artists. Having worked with some of them, it is gratifying to see their progress and their contributions to the art world,” says Manzano, who has been a member of the faculty since 2006. This exhibition is part of the visual arts program of the Metropolitan Center.” The college also is celebrating Hispanic culture by participating in the sixth annual Latin American Cultural Week in New York City by working with participating institutions promoting the arts and bringing together the community at large.

 The Latin American Cultural Week is an annual festival that showcases music, dance, visual arts, theater, film, literature and auctions to people throughout the New York City area. The LACW is supported by Mayor Bloomberg’s Latin Media and Entertainment Commission, the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, and other government, institutions and corporations. For a full schedule of events, please visit

The LACW is a program of Pan American Musical Art Research, founded and directed by Uruguayan pianist Polly Ferman.

 About SUNY Empire State College
Celebrating its 40th anniversary throughout 2011, SUNY Empire State College was established in 1971 to offer adult learners the opportunity to earn associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the State University of New York. Students learn through independent studies, online courses, seminars and residencies. Learners also may earn credit for prior college-level learning from work and life experience.

 The college serves more than 20,000 students worldwide at 35 locations in New York state and online. Its 63,000 alumni are active in their communities as entrepreneurs, politicians, business professionals, artists, not-for-profit agency employees, teachers, veterans and active military, union members and more.

For additional information, visit For more on the 40th anniversary, please go to


 Directions: #2,3 trains to Hoyt Street or A,C,G to Hoyt-Schermerhorn Streets.


Media Contact

David M. Henahan, Director of Communications
518-587-2100, ext. 2918

(after 5 p.m. and weekends)

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