The editorial categories are research topics that have guided researchers during the recovery phase and continue to be the impetus behind the Documents Project’s digital archive and the Critical Documents book series. Developed by the project’s Editorial Board, each of the teams analyzed this framework and adapted it to their local contexts in developing their research objectives and work plans during the Recovery Phase. Learn more on the Editorial Framework page.
This article introduces readers to Casa Aztlán, a Latino social services center and cultural organization founded in Chicago in 1970, and widely known in the Midwest for its cultural programs. It describes Casa Aztlán’s location in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood and its mission to promote self-determination for the community through both its services and programs. The center was home to three Latino artists who offered workshops in silk-screen printing, ceramics, and painting for community youth, as well as organized photography exhibitions. It also housed Aztlán Communications Center, a room with graphic and typesetting facilities made available to community organizations lacking resources to produce their own flyers, pamphlets, and other publications. In sum, this text describes how Casa Aztlán serves talented minority artists who lacked the means to develop their talent and/or exhibit their work.
Describing the history and mission of Casa Aztlán, this text by the reporter and critic Antonio Zavala appeared in the October 1982 issue of Mirarte: Chicago’s Latino Art Publication, a journal published by MIRA (Mi Raza Arts Consortium). It testifies to the integration of cultural promotion and social services at Casa Aztlán, and also shows that the artists of the Chicago mural movement were involved in forwarding the programs of a grassroots organization of the scope of Casa Aztlán. Moreover, the author writes about Ray Patlán’s murals painted in 1969–70 in the center’s main hall.