Guatemala Hello

Guatemala Map Graphic
Guatemala Hello
Artist Balam Soto
Jan. 12, 2017
Guatemala picture

Guatemala City. Photo: Unknown Guatemalan photographer.

March 2017 will be a memorable time. For a long time now, I have daydreamed of finding an opportunity to go back to my native Guatemala to make art and support others in their passions, dreams, and ventures. I searched without success until one evening I received a series of emails from a mailing list. Among these emails I found the American Arts Incubator RFP and saw on the short list of countries participating exactly what I had been searching for — Guatemala.

I read it over about 4 times to make sure I was understanding correctly before I running to wake up my wife and show her the opportunity. My groggy and very patient wife read the RFP, looked at me and said, ok, let’s get writing — tomorrow.

I considered proposing projects ranging from projection mapping to E-textiles, made a few drafts to discuss with my wife, did a lot of research, and finally settled on E-textiles.

After a few months of internal agony waiting for the finalists to be announce, I finally received the email one Saturday afternoon while working in my studio. It was there in my inbox, the emails acknowledging my acceptance into the American Arts Incubator Guatemala project. I literally jumped from the chair and called my family to share the news.

Then the real work began. It has been an awesome experience developing the accepted project, from the research to the elaboration of the project details. The highlight of the preparation was to meet and get to know the amazing folks that work so hard to make this possible, especially Kate and Shamsher. This team can make magic and help us to be ready to bring new media art and technology to the world.

I am counting the days and every day the excitement grows, as does the project I’m developing. Nos vemos pronto.