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Hoosier uses art to uplift Latinos during Hispanic Heritage Month

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Eduardo Luna is using his love for the arts to lift up the Hispanic community throughout Hispanic Heritage Month.

“It’s important for us –for the local community that’s been here for a long time — to know that we exist (and) that we are creatives,” he said.

Luna is the co-curator of the art exhibition Identidad, Dreams y Marchas inside the Artsgarden. “Identidad” means identity, and “marchas” means marches. He’s put together works from Mexican and Mexican-American artists from across the state to show that Hispanic people are more than just hard workers.

“We are creatives, too. We are very artistic. We are … dreamers. We do things that should be showcased,” Luna said.

Last year, Luna founded the non-profit Arte Mexicano en Indiana to promote Mexican culture.

In celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month, he’s collaborating with the Arts Council of Indianapolis for the exhibition. He says the artwork on display is inspired by immigrant rights protests, Mexican history and cultural identity.

“Identity, you know, like the piñatas that you see on display — that is a craft that we’ve done for many, many years in our countries and that is a way of keeping our identity,” Luna said.

“I love that they’re doing this to be able to help people express. And it’s a bunch of different artists, too, so they get to display their pieces and be able to have a voice, too, and I think that’s really beautiful and amazing,” said Valerie Dakins, a Brazil resident.

Overall, Luna says he wants Hoosiers to look at Mexicans differently and to see the value of Mexican culture in Indiana.

“It’s just slowly pushing, pushing until we get representation and one day, hopefully, we’ll have space for our culture not only Mexican culture but also the rest of Latin America,” Luna said.

The exhibition will end on Oct. 15.