¡SOLAS Presents! FRG Recipients: Andrew Bernard and Grant Florian Tuesday, November 5, 3pm @ the LAII
Latin American & Iberian Institute and Tinker Foundation Field Research Grant Recipients will present their respective research conducted in Argentina and Brazil.
"Urban Acequias and the Desert Oasis: An exploration of Integrated Water Infrastructure in Mendoza, Argentina"
Andrew Bernard is a M.A. student in Landscape Architecture (2014) at the University of New Mexico. His studies have focused on the integration of infrastructure, nature, culture and water as a means to resilient design in arid regions. He finds that Albuquerque’s existing municipal water infrastructure is outdated and needs to shift from a single-purposed perspective system to one that integrates these elements and connects cities instead of dividing them. As a FRG recipient, Andrew was granted the opportunity to explore a successful example of integrated infrastructure in the arid region of Mendoza, Argentina for the month of July, 2013.
Mendoza is a city located at the foothills of the Andes mountains and while well known for its exquisite Malbec wine, it is best known as a desert oasis. This identity is supported by an intricate network of acequias or irrigation channels that run along each street providing irrigation for the vibrant street tree canopy that provides a refuge from the sun. In addition to providing irrigation, the acequias integrate storm water capture and function as linear public spaces that connect the city, fostering social and cultural exchange. Andrew's presentation, "Urban Acequias and the Desert Oasis: An Exploration of Integrated Water Infrastructure in Mendoza, Argentina" examines the function, significance, and benefits of the acequia system in Mendoza and illuminates the lessons that can be applied toward an alternative water infrastructure paradigm in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Joseph Sorrentino "Los Chileros: The Chile Pickers" Thursday, October 24, 4pm @ the Latin American & Iberian Institute (LAII)
Join SOLAS, the Latin American & Iberian Institute, the Graduate Art Association, and the Spanish Portuguese Graduate Student Association at the LAII for a special presentation by photographer and journalist Joseph Sorrentino.
Joseph Sorrentino tells stories. Expressed through photographs and news articles, these stories are about the lives that we do not see or hear about often: those who harvest the food we eat. Sorrentino’s visual and verbal narratives speak of the experiences of migrant workers in chile farms in southern New Mexico. The median income of a chile picker is less than $6,700 a year and most live in substandard housing and reside in emergency shelters. As migrant laborers, their employment fluctuates with the daily demand for labor. Living a precarious existence, they wake up at dawn to wait on the streets of border towns hoping a contractor will select them. If they are not chosen to work or the contractor doesn’t arrive, they oftentimes return to the shelter to wait for the next day.
These are the stories of chile farmers who are exposed to the uncertain economic conditions of our current labor system. Yet Sorrentino’s photographs don’t dramatize their situations or convey misery or injustice felt on behalf of the workers; rather they focus on portraying the blunt realism that relates to these working conditions: survival and