The Theater Offensive’s Mission is to present the diversity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender lives in art so bold it breaks through personal isolation, challenges the status quo, and builds thriving communities.
Our work provokes vibrant discussion about the realities of being lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ or Queer). Through neighborhood social gatherings, workshops, performances and open discussions, the Theater Offensive transcends traditional theater boundaries and opens new avenues of understanding, awareness and inclusion.
OUT In Your Neighborhood
The approach we take to our programs and other work is called Out In Your Neighborhood or Out’Hood. We believe that empowering our community to have conversations about and work towards social change is essential for any change to happen! Our Out’Hood approach allows us to work hand-in-hand with our neighbors in Roxbury, Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, and the South End. Our work focuses on boldly sharing the realities of the diverse LGBT community! While the term ‘OUT’ is most often associated with the LGBTQ movement for equal civil rights, the concept of OUTness resonates far beyond the LGBTQ community – especially in communities that face racism, poverty and violence. Through OUT’hood’s lively public dialogues, neighbors are empowered to stay true to themselves, as well as create safer, more vibrant neighborhoods.
We serve our mission by creating and performing original and interactive work that we create with and share with our LGBT community
All of our Out’Hood work (events, workshops, and shows) is grouped into four categories:
Collective Creation: we work with our neighbors (of all ages 14 and up) to create original performances based on their personal experiences. Our residents share what they create to their peers with feedback sessions. Example: True Colors: Out Youth Theater.
Neighborhood Productions: where well-known local and national artists use input from community members to create and develop their art and then present it back into the community. Example: River See in the Fall.
Workshop Exchanges – Youth and adult activists bring OUT’Hood workshops to community-based organizations, events, and schools to create social change and movement. In some cases, organizations bring TTO workshops in exchange for bringing our work to them.
Cultural Events – The neighborhoods we work in are rich with their own ongoing local and ethnic community events. We collaborate with groups in the community to help create a visible LGBT presence at festivals, community occasions, and celebrate diverse moments that deserve to be celebrated, e.g. dBar’s musical theater night and Betances Festival Boriqua.
The Museum of the National Center of Afro American Artists (NCAAA) is dedicated to the celebration, exhibition, collection and criticism of black visual arts heritage worldwide.
The Museum presents a wide range of historical and contemporary exhibitions in many media, including painting, sculpture, graphics, photography and decorative arts.
Among the resources offered at the Museum are its African, Afro-Latin, Afro-Caribbean and African American collections; an extensive slide archive, and a rich variety of education programs for young people and adults.
On the grounds of the museum’s historic location sits the Eternal Presence. This piece was commissioned by the National Center of Afro-American Artists to celebrate human creativity and spirituality from the beginning of the human family to now.
John Wilson created the sculpture drawing upon various traditions including the Olmec heads of ancient Mexico and images of contemplating Buddhas. Eternal Presence was installed in 1987, and represents the commitment of the NCAAA to excellence in contemporary artistic expression for the black world
Since 1969, the National Center of Afro-American Artists and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, have enjoyed a unique collaboration that has been mutually beneficial, and has greatly assisted in the development of the NCAAA’s museum.
The mission of El Museo del Barrio is to present and preserve the art and culture of Puerto Ricans and all Latin Americans in the United States. Through its extensive collections, varied exhibitions and publications, bilingual public programs, educational activities, festivals and special events, El Museo educates its diverse public in the richness of Caribbean and Latin American arts and cultural history. By introducing young people to this cultural heritage, El Museo is creating the next generation of museum-goers, while satisfying the growing interest in Caribbean and Latin American art of a broad national and international audience.
El Museo was founded 45 years ago by artist and educator Raphael Montañez Ortiz and a coalition of parents, educators, artists, and activists who noted that mainstream museums largely ignored Latino artists. Since its inception, El Museo has been committed to celebrating and promoting Latino culture, thus becoming a cornerstone of El Barrio, and a valuable resource for New York City. El Museo’s varied permanent collection of over 6,500 objects, spans more than 800 years of Latin American, Caribbean, and Latino art, includes pre-Columbian Taíno artifacts, traditional arts, twentieth-century drawings, paintings, sculptures and installations, as well as prints, photography, documentary films, and video. For a brief overview of our history and to explore the institutional chronology and exhibition history year by year, click here.
El Museo del Barrio’s purpose is to collect, preserve, exhibit and interpret the art and artifacts of Caribbean and Latin American cultures for posterity.
To enhance the sense of identity, self-esteem and self-knowledge of the Caribbean and Latin American peoples by educating them in their artistic heritage and bringing art and artists into their communities.
To provide an educational forum that promotes an appreciation and understanding of Caribbean and Latin American art and culture and its rich contribution to North America.
To offer Caribbean and Latin American artists greater access to institutional support in the national and international art world.
To convert young people of Caribbean and Latin American descent into the next generation of museum-goers, stakeholders in the institution created for them.
To fulfill our special responsibility as a center of learning and training ground for the growing numbers of artists, educators, art historians, and museum professionals interested in Caribbean and Latin American art.
This mission reaffirms the vision of Raphael Montañez Ortiz, who founded El Museo del Barrio in 1969, and of the Puerto Rican educators, artists, and community activists who worked in support of this goal.