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Meet Jasmine Cintron, Kelly Street Associate

Jazy Cintron joined our team as Kelly Street Associate in July 2019. Get to know more about her!

In what neighborhood do you live?

Allerton

How did you first become connected to The LP, or hear about The LP?

My good friend Aya Clarke sent me the Fellowship opportunity for the 2018 cohort. I was selected to be a part of the cohort for the Hunts Point/Longwood.

What attracted you to The LP? How does working here relate to your professional goals?

Working with The LP I would like to gain the knowledge of working alongside the community partners, fundraising, and bridging the gap of art and community. I would like to learn how nonprofit arts organizations come into communities and connect with leaders. I believe The LP can help me fully realize my vision of being connected not only to myself but to the communities I would like to work in. I also want to challenge myself in becoming the leader I know I can be with the tools of what The LP has already taught me and what I will learn in the future.

Do you have your own creative practice? If so, tell us more!

My creative practice is photography and walking. Photography for me is a moving mediation where I become more present in my surroundings and in the people I encounter. My brain shuts down and is forced to see what’s around me. Through the lens of the camera, I can connect to people, places, and things. Mostly importantly, I feel free to be me and be creative in how I capture the world around me. My second creative process is walking. I mostly walk everywhere, to and from all my jobs. I like to clear my head by putting the phone away and walking in silence. I force myself to observe what’s around me, find the beauty in everything I see. We take so much for granted; the architecture of the buildings, the laughter of small children or an elder dancing freely in the street. These small little moments help me to decompress. I remind myself to smile and to not take life to seriously I forget to enjoy it. This is how I connect and ground myself to the present.

Can you tell us about an artist or project that has inspired you?

Martha Cooper and Henry Chalfant, while I recognize they are not people of color. They were two photographers whose work I admire. They took a risk and documented the graffiti scene in the 80s. I love looking at graffiti as an art form. The intricate designs, colors and creativity, and mixing politics with art was eye opening to me. These photographers led me to the path to street photography. Photographing what I saw and training myself to see what’s hidden among the cityscape. They earned the respect of writers and saw the importance of documenting these images only for the writers to see their work other than a moving train. Martha Cooper created techniques on photographing moving trains to print a clear image. Through their work I discovered a world of images and camera that led me to be creative in my own way.

What is your favorite… film? …album? …food?

To Wong Foo, Spice Girls, rice and beans.

Where do you do your laundry?

My house.

In your opinion, why does art matter?

Art matters because it’s a form of expression. An expression that can be defined by you and for you. I believe that it’s so freeing to know that art can be anything you want it to be. It’s not a square ridge box but a doodle design that can go many different ways and still be beautiful. Art can heal, connect and strengthen the person who is creating it and allow that story to be told to community. Art can open a child’s mind to so many opportunities in a world where rules and society puts you in boxes.

What LP value do you most relate to and why?

The value of The Laundromat Project that resonates the most for me is active listeners and learners. I believe in the importance of being curious and asking questions to understand what is going on in the present with a person or situation. To be curious is to learn about things outside yourself even when it’s uncomfortable. That’s when you expand your knowledge and know there’s more than the four walls you live in. When we actively listen we become educated and informed. We come to understand that there is more than what was taught to us by society, by school and our family. When we observe, question and decide upon the information we seek. We become empowered to be the change we want to see in the community. Its starts with a single question and the willingness to listen.

Jazy is yoga instructor, photographer, and Bronxite. She loves to explore New York City streets for inspiration through her Sony a6300 camera. She has been teaching yoga in The Bronx since 2012. She enjoys teaching adults, but her specialty is children’s yoga. For the last three years she has been studying anatomy and therapeutic movement with Amy Matthews and Leslie Kaminoff at The Breathing Project. In 2016, she debuted two portfolios called Bronx Perspective and Reflective Surfaces in NYC. Jazy is currently working on merging her love of yoga and photography with her next photo project called Bronx Yoga Bodies.

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