Hometown Hero 11/5/2008: Alejandra C. Delfin

Alejandra C. Delfin
November 3, 2008 6:59:08 AM PST
Alejandra C. Delfin is today's Hometown Hero because of her charitable contributions to her Hunts Point community. Alejandra is the daughter of Victor Delfin, who is known as the Picasso of Peru; her mother is an established artist now residing in France. Despite her well-known lineage, Alejandra remains humble because she knows that money one day does not necessarily mean money the next day. She has a keen understanding and acceptance of the life of a struggling artist and knows the struggles that an artist's life entails.

Arriving in New York in 1989, Alejandra established her tiny studio in Hunts Point and quickly began sharing her printmaking skills with the children in the community as well as local artists and the neighborhood. Alejandra unselfishly works round the clock at this studio, providing a safe haven for the kids of the community in this poverty stricken area of the NYC. Alejandra teaches her students more than printmaking; she teaches them about self-discipline, respect for others, respect for art and beauty, cooperation and collaboration with others, and, above all, self-esteem. The kids who enter her workshop become empowered by the very act of being able to imagine a concept, execute it, and lay it out on paper, regardless of whether it is Foam-Printing, Monotype, Mono-Silkscreen, Stencil, Solar Plate, Collagraph or Linocut.

Additionally, if a child comes into a morning class without having eaten breakfast, Alejandra feeds that child. Although the studio is barely making enough to meet its operating costs, Alejandra still finds a way to make every child feel special, as though they were one of her own children, and her students reciprocate that sentiment. Many of the teenage students who have taken her classes have volunteered their time to helping to keep the studio up and running.

Alejandra C. Delfin is truly a fascinating woman as well as a Hometown Hero. She saw need in her community to expose these children to something new, different, fun and educational and took it upon herself to address that need because of her love of the arts and of children. She felt that these printmaking skills would empower these children. Her mission for her studio is to cultivate an artistic environment that encourages creative development, technical experimentation, and the exchange of ideas. Her mission with these children is to keep their minds active, to continuously challenge them, and to provide them with an opportunity to be exposed to a new type of art. Alejandra is successfully pursuing both of these missions, which is why she is today's Hometown Hero.

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* Sponsored by the Visiting Nurse Service of New York and Bank of America

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