Storytelling through art

After a week of informative training, Salem Maritime National Park has an amazing Lantix and people of color diversity exhibit towards the back of the visitor’s center building. The Dominican Faceless dolls art project and El Punto Art Museum information caught my attention the day I arrived to the visitor’s center. The Dominican faceless dolls were created by artist Liliana Mera Lime in 1981. The origin of this artwork was to advocate diversity and honor indigenous, European, and African heritage of Dominican people. Within the exhibition, there are posters of other people and a picture of their faceless doll they created through paper, colored pencils, yarn, and pipe cleaners.  “My doll signifies freedom of the woman”, a statement Altagracia Florian makes through the importance of her faceless doll. This exhibit has really made an impact on me, and I was so proud and happy that other communities of color can advocate their different backgrounds through art. Beside the faceless doll exhibit is the “El Punto” Urban Art museum information exhibit. This exhibit informs the visitor of an urban area right next to the national park, “El Punto” (The Point) community which was originally a Polish community that dates back to the 1700s and soon later housed people of color of Dominican, African, and Latinx origin. This museum is a walkthrough of the area of artistic murals that represent the community. This community suffered through invisible socio-economic barriers and segregation of communities at Salem, Massachusetts. Each mural represents storytelling through art, and there are over 75 murals celebrating diversity and unity. As my first week goes by, I enjoy informing the visitors that venture out to Salem’s national park about a community that is rich in diversity, and I advocate for them to take a reading about the faceless dolls or walk through the “El Punto” community. A fellow intern from another internship program and myself even got the chance to create our own faceless dolls. We ourselves even got the experience to venture out to “El Punto” community and check out the amazing murals on the community’s buildings.

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