The issue of human trafficking and illegal immigration has long been a problem especially to countries who share their borders with other nations such as the United States. And for years, human rights activists and supporters have tried to fight for the chance to give immigrants a fair chance to become American citizens.
Famous supporters of pro-immigrant efforts include Laurene Powell Jobs (the widow of Steve Jobs), Latina actresses Eva Longoria, America Ferrera and musician Carlos Santana. In the arts scene, a leading voice in the movement of artists facing down the tide of anti-immigrant hatred is Favianna Rodriguez.
Favianna is an American interdisciplinary artist and cultural organizer who got her start as a political poster designer in the 1990s. As an activist, her work mainly features themes that deal with equality, community building and social change. She is currently an instructor at Stanford University teaching art and organizing projects about migration, global politics, economic disparity, patriarchy and independence.
Rodriguez is also the current artist featured in Voice of Art (VOA) – a video documentary series produced by Pharell Williams and created by John Carr and Z.S. Grand that follows the work of artists who work towards the transformation and social justice in their communities.
In this episode of VOA entitled “Migration is Beautiful”, Rodriguez shares the spotlight with actress and activist Rosario Dawson and Pulitzer Prize winning author undocumented activist Jose Antonio Vargas. The episode focuses on how these personalities along with other artists in the area use online and offline art and activism to bring about definitive changes to immigration policy and perceptions of immigrants in the United States.
The episode also features stories that show certain aspects of the issue of illegal immigration such as states that have implemented laws that build negative thoughts and images of immigrants to the public. The documentary also follows Rodriguez and other artists in the various events they participate in that allow them to showcase their talents and voice out their ideals. Here are some of Favianna’s posters.
If you want to see the complete documentary of Migration is Beautiful, you can watch it on Pharell William’s I Am Other channel using this links (Part 2, Part 3). You can also check out Favianna Rodriguez’s website for more information on her work.
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