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Casa de la Noche Opens New Multimedia Art Exhibit on Human Migration and Refugees


By Catherine Demme

Ever since birds flew into her artwork following the 2016 US presidential elections, artist Ellie Harold has marveled at their arrival.

“I was on my second visit to San Miguel de Allende. Believing the election would go a certain way, I was dismayed at the actual outcome,” she says.

To process her emotions, she began hurling black paint at her canvas. As she did, she began to discover shapes in the abstract globs.

“Some think my Birds Fly In paintings look like Rorschach images, and it’s true that each person may see something different in them,” she says.

Birds Fly In: A Human Refuge Project was first born as a response to the suffering of dismayed Americans. Once Harold saw images of children in detention cages at the US-Mexico border, the project seemed more urgent. Harold is also an ordained Unity minister. She believes that migration is natural in birds and humans.

Ellie first encountered David Mendoza last April when she returned to San Miguel to facilitate an annual art retreat for women.

“I heard David’s violin one morning as I passed through the Jardin. Next thing I knew I was at Los Milagros weeping into my huevos.”

On the last day of her stay, she set up her equipment in the Jardín. While Mendoza played violin, she painted. When the music stopped, she brought her painting to the restaurant, and the two met for the first time. Mendoza later told her that when he closes his eyes to play, what he sees looks like her bird paintings.

When Harold began to consider a soundtrack to accompany the Birds Fly In exhibit, she thought of Mendoza.

“His music reminded me of the soulful song of a bird.”

She was thrilled to learn that Mendoza not only played several instruments but that he also composed. In mid-November 2018, Mendoza accepted a commission from her to create a full-length album.

While she has now painted many hours to his original compositions, the April 16 event will be the first time Harold will paint alongside Mendoza in concert. The evening introducing Birds Fly In will feature music from the upcoming album as well as a short video by Fer Mos.

Tickets include a glass of wine and cheese and the chance to take home a small framed painting and a signed event poster. Tickets are 400 pesos and may be purchased at Paprika, Ancha San Antonio 9a.


Music and Art Opening

Birds Fly In: A Human Refuge Project

Work by artist Ellie Harold

Music by David Mendoza

Tue, Apr 16, 5:30pm

Casa de la Noche

Organos 19

400 pesos


Paprika Restaurant

Ancha San Antonio 9A


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