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Last year local artist Lila Magallón began Acercarte, a project near and dear to her heart.  The goal of Acercarte was to bring art to rural communities.  Her plan wasn’t to do something as simple as donating art to these communities, but rather to bring a love of art to the children of the communities.  Through planting the seed with the children, she believed, their love of art would grow, flourish, and stay with them throughout their lives.

To accomplish this goal, last August Magallón, in conjunction with artist Leonardo Díaz, spent a week in El Cardonal giving an art workshop to children from the town and its surrounding communities and ranches.  In addition to learning some of the fundamentals of art and some basic techniques, the group produced a mural composed of 24 separate panels, each done by one student, which when placed together had a unifying theme.

This in and of itself is a wonderful thing.  The most wonderful part, however, is that for the children of the community everything was free of cost.  Her dream of bringing art to the community was not financially motivated.  Acercarte is a charity project.  It is motivated by the artist’s love of art, and her belief that art enriches the lives of each person it touches.  Magallón and Díaz donated their time to organize the project and give the workshop.  They used materials bought with donations from private supporters, traveled to and from El Cardonal with donated transportation, lived in donated lodging while in El Cardonal, and with time and talent donated by supporters, produced a video documenting the project.

The Acercarte project in El Cardonal was a great success, culminating in the unveiling of the mural in the town square.  As the mural is comprised of 24 separate panels, it is mobile.  In October, Magallón brought the mural to La Paz to showcase the season opening of her gallery, La Encantada.  The opening was presided over by La Paz mayor Esthela Ponce.  The mural is currently on traveling display in other communities in Baja Sur.

This August, Magallón wants to repeat last year’s success.  Working with artist Rose Robin – who herself has a charity art project, The Painting Pirates, for marginal teens in Esterito – another community and another art project have been chosen to benefit from the Acercarte charity.  While the community they have chosen this year, El Triunfo, is somewhat more accessible than last year’s choice, the chosen art project is a great deal more ambitious.

For this year’s art project, Magallón and Robin have chosen a site outside El Triunfo – a riverbend around which is a natural park.  Their goal is to turn this area into a genuine community park, complete with art installations created by the children of the community.  There are several large boulders in the area, and Magallón, Robin, and their students in the Acercarte workshop will create mosaics from tile and mirror pieces on the boulders.

Magallón is in the process of organizing the project, which will take place the first week of August.  She is seeking interested individuals who would like to donate time or materials to the project, or who would like to support the project financially.  Every donation, she stresses, whether it is financial or otherwise, will be strictly accounted for, with complete transparency in the accounting process.

Magallón and Robin are asking for donations of broken tile and mirrors, mastic, grout, bottled drinking water, food provisions, and first aid kits.  Loans of camping gear would also be appreciated, as the pair will be camping at the riverbend for the week in which the workshop will be given.  Transportation and/or gas vouchers are another donation that would be useful.  They are also asking for new white T-shirts, mostly size medium, to give to each student.  The T-shirts will be printed with the name and dates of the project, as well as sponsor’s names.  And, of course, anyone wishing to volunteer their time or to become a financial sponsor will be gratefully welcomed.

If you would like to support this amazing project through whatever means, please email Lila Magallón at or call her at 612-140-0391.  You can visit the Acercarte Facebook page at

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