Opinion: Is It Racism Or Art Censorship in Holyoke?

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The artwork that some in Holyoke thought was inappropriate.


By David Flores

On Saturday, September 19, 2014, my mural celebrating the Puerto Rican diaspora in Holyoke, MA was scheduled for installation as part of a set of pieces created in conjunction with the Holyoke Alleyway Revitalization Project. Before the piece could go up, the owner of the building on which it was to be installed decided that it could not be displayed on her property. She said that my piece would do more harm than good to Holyoke’s Hispanic community, and that in order to display it I would have to change it to make it “more diverse.”

The …

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Inaugural Poet Richard Blanco Recalls A Closeted Childhood

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Photo: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons


When Richard Blanco read his poem “One Today” at President Obama’s inauguration in January 2013, he was the youngest poet ever to read at a presidential inauguration. But more attention went to Blanco’s other distinctions: he was the first Latino, the first immigrant and the first openly gay poet to get that commission.

Blanco was born in Spain, but grew up with his Cuban family in Miami — a culture-bridging childhood he describes in his new memoir, The Prince of Los Cocuyos. In it, richard blanco bookhe writes about taking pains to hide his sexual orientation as a child in a hyper-masculine, conservative community. But Blanco tells NPR’s Arun …

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