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EL FLOW: Cross-Border Youth Culture in Conversation

Flow is defined as the rhythm and rhyme of a hip-hop song's lyrics and how they interact with each other. It also describes the way in which culture, language, music, and styles, wash back and forth across the border in a continual flow that rises and falls, is blocked, re-directed and flows again. This ongoing interchange of ideas and experiences forms a unique border rhythm that is mixed and re-mixed by each generation, producing a unique experience for border youth.

In the fall of 2011 and spring of 2012, students from 8 high schools, four on each side of the border, interacted with one another and explored what it means to be border youth through conversations, artwork and online interchanges. The Rubin Center invited a series of local artists and artist collectives to respond to the artwork created by the students and create two massive installations based on the themes of border life that have been raised in the youths writing, conversations and artwork. On installation is on display in the Rubin Center's L Gallery. The second installation is located at the Rodadora Museum in Ciudad Juárez.


David Flores and Aron Venegas


La Rodadora, Ciudad Juárez: Tamara Alejandra Carrillo Flores, Olmo Ricardo León Lara, Omar Ojeda López, Jorge Alejandro Pérez (Yorch), Juan Carlos Reyes Delgadillo (Waka) and Abimael Villaseñor (Melo)

Rubin Center, El Paso: Arturo Damasco, David Flores Rivera (Mambo), Jesus Elpidio Perez, and Juan Carlos Reyes Delgadillo (Waka)


Ciudad Juárez: Thomas G. Rogan, Consul General, U.S. Consulate General in Ciudad Juárez, Olga Elena Bashbush, Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Consulate General in Ciudad Juárez

El Paso: Melissa Barba-Espinosa, Ysleta Independent School District



Ciudad Juárez

Colegio de Bachilleres Plantel Núm. 6: Ing. Jesús José Padilla Moreno - Director North District, Lic. Lorena Garduño - Public Affairs, Prof. Ramón Mancillas - Coordinator.

Escuela Preparatoria Central de Ciudad Juárez: Dr. Alfredo Cervantes Garcia - Principal, Lic. Arturo Ramírez Lara - Coordinator.

Escuela Preparatoria Federal por Cooperación "Altavista": Mtra. Armida E. Valverde Cabral - Principal, Mtro. Luis Ruben Diaz - Coordinator.

Preparatoria Multicultural ITESM: Ing. Martín López Méndez - Director General, Arq. Saria López Acosta - Principal of Preparatoria Multicultural - ITESM, Mtro. Mario Parra - Coordinator.


El Paso

Bel Air High School: Francisco Delgado

Eastwood High School: Diane Vera, Angelica Quillan

Hanks High School: Lorena Williams

Riverside High School: Rudy Martinez, Rick Boissilier



This project was supported in part by the U.S. Department of State Visual Arts Initiative, Paso del Norte Health Foundation, Texas Commission on the Arts, Ysleta Independent School District and Stanlee and Gerald Rubin Center for the Visual Arts at The University of Texas at El Paso.

Pablo Rodrigo Juárez - Arte en el Parque, A.C.; Karen Alamo, Ing. Luis Carlos Hernández and Luis Mendoza of Espacio Interactivo La Rodadora; Rosa Elva Vazquez and staff of Museo De Arte, Ciudad Juárez; Magdalena Cedillos and Liliana Fuentes, Museo de la Revolución en la Frontera (MUREF); 656 Comics.

Ana Cruz Valencia, Oscar Ivan López; the U.S. Consulate General staff and the Chihuahua Business Foundation (FECHAC); The Northern Border Community Foundation and Project A Ganar; Julieta Saucedo, Erica Marin, Rebecca Muñoz, Wendi Glick, Alan Cadera, Arlyn Flores, Gabriela Moreno and Gabriel Vasquez.

Puro Borde Collective, Chassé Dance Studio, Colectivo Barimalá, Tribu del Trueno, and Rubin Center student interns.