Coney Island + Artist statement

“Me siento más libre en México”, “I feel more free in Mexico” -Hector
“My family is still in Colombia” -Vanessa
“Me puedes tomar foto, pero me pagas, ¿verdad?” “You can take my picture. You’re paying me, right?” -Romeo
“Somos de Venezuela, Es mi hogar”, “We’re from Venezuela, it’s my home” -Laura y Ángel
“Mi familia we mudó de México a Nueva York poor el trabajo”, “My family moved from Mexico to New York in search of work” -Natalia’s dad

I grew up with Tajín: The spicy, salty condiment Mexicans love to put on all of our food. From pineapple to popcorn, Tajín just makes everything taste Mexican. Tajín is hard to find in the United States, but we’re always looking for things that flavor our experiences with something that reminds us of who we are and what we have in common.

I went looking for Tajín today in Coney Island; speaking to Latin American immigrants about what they do, where they came from, and what flavors their lives in the U.S. that reminds them who they are.

I enjoyed meeting new people and talking to them about their experiences in the United States: hearing their sweet and sour stories. I would often lead with the question, “where are you from?”, and felt that this question unsettled some people. Other times, I would lead with, ”what do you like to do in your free time?”, which I believe put the subjects at ease. I played with different introductions each time, and finally found one that I believe suited most people.

No matter what people leave behind, they always bring something flavorful with them.

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