The celebrations for the Day of the Dead in Omaha began with a presentation from Abstract Mindz

Even though many consider Friday the 13th to be a day of bad luck, which prompts them to stay home and not do anything that might put them at risk of, say, having an accident, for plastic arts group Abstract Mindz, said date turned out to be the complete opposite. The twelve young members of Abstract Mindz, such as Ricardo Trejo, Gerardo “Pollo” Diaz and Eduardo Barrales, to name a few, dared to challenge superstitions and successfully opened an interesting exhibition in honor of the famous Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead.

During the weekend, Abstract Mindz presented original art pieces from its talented members at the Bancroft Street Market (2702 S 10th St.), where the mariachi was heard, and many altars were placed as an offering to the dearly departed. Jose Antonio “Tony” Barrales, one of the members of Abstract Mindz, mentioned that the showcase had a lot of people in attendance and that the public's support was priceless since the show's main purpose was to secure funds so that the group can have access to a place in which they can work together and collaborate.

On top of the over 50 pieces in the exhibit, including drawings, paintings, and photographs, Barrales explained that for the event "each of the twelve artists got to work and designed an image according to their own style, so that all pieces could be integrated into a mural for the Day of the Dead."

This showcase allowed the organizers to sell tickets for a small price to offer the art on display as prizes for a raffle so that everyone would visit. "The support was bigger than what we expected!"

Barrales, who began to paint when he was in elementary school, emphasized that the purpose of starting Abstract Mindz was "giving a chance to artists who were too young and who didn't yet have a portfolio, who haven't had a chance to get their work into galleries."

He's also a musician, and he got into the art when he was eight years old by playing the violin at Mariachi Las Estrellitas. Later on, under the direction of his father Alejandro Barrales, and with the support of his mother Reyna Vallecillo, Barrales and his brothers founded the Mariachi Patria Juvenil.

After living in Louisiana for a few years, he grew fond of hip-hop music and started to write his own songs in English which you can hear at YouTube channel Iconic Infamy: "It was thanks to my brother-in-law Mark Saavedra, who has his own production company, that I got a chance to record my own songs."

Along with this, Barrales continues to nurture his love of painting through iCoNic D-Zin3z, particularly with the so-called fan art which has allowed him to keep going through rough times: "I learned that art is not only something visual, something that is part of the world of entertainment, it is also something that helps people express their inner-self. When I paint something, it's as if my mind and heart were telling my arm what to do".

According to Barrales, Abstract Mindz will continue to search for new venues so that "we can hang our art on their walls because art is something that has to continue having a presence because it allows people to express what they feel."
Marina Rosado

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