Marisol is a San Francisco Bay Area native of Chicano and Black heritage, born in 1988. She is a self-taught artist and creator of Azteca Negra, a culturally inspired line of textile jewelry and accessories. Marisol comes from a long line of multifaceted women artisans, and uses her firmly rooted ethnic identity to design pieces that merge culture, modern art, geometric principles and traditional textiles. Many Azteca Negra pieces are created using fabric from Mexico and various African countries, as well as upcycled leather and natural beads. All of Marisol’s pieces are original designs and handcrafted. In many cultures across the world, the use of traditional textiles is present in the respective indigenous economies, fashion, art, and spiritual belief systems. It is Marisol’s ambition to celebrate and share indigenous art-°©‐form practices, beliefs, and positive messages through her artistic designs. Marisol lives and works in Hayward, CA.
I am Daughter of the Diaspora. African born in America. Cuban born in California. I am Afro-Latina American. Raised in Oakland, California my soul found a physical place to call Home. Growing-up I listened to my elders tell stories of Black Panthers and I heard my elders tell stories of the Cuban Revolution. How can I contribute this beautiful struggle? My Weapon of choice is Art. I studied at YouTube University, traveled, meditated and finally got my degree in Ethnic Studies at Mills College. After submitting my thesis I never wanted to sit in front of a computer. I wanted to use my hands to spread knowledge and culture for The People. Some classmates laughed saying you went to college just to make earrings. They don't really know me. I'm a creator, educator, activist, inspiration, self- esteem booster, cultural fashionista, and businesswoman. I specifically like to use African fabric. I wanted to integrate African traditions into everyday urban American lifestyle. The vivid colors and unique patterns captivated me. I want to put it on everything hats, shoes, journals, bags, and more. African traditions and hip hop culture are both about sampling from the past and remixing it and that's what I achieve with my art business, Tres Mercedes. My soundtrack: live concert of Fela Kuti and Celia Cruz.
In her desire to create personal and heartfelt gifts for close friends, Julisa Garcia, creator behind Soldadera, began making earrings using African and Mexican textiles.The prints, colors, textures, and overall boldness of the textiles are elements that draw her towards them. Each piece is made with a certain mindfulness that honors and celebrates the cultures in which Julisa identifies. The San Jose native is a Xicana, Puerto Rican who proudly claims, celebrates, explores, and defends her indigenous and Afro-‐Latino roots. The hoops, bamboo and door knocker shaped earrings are a nod to hip hop, a culture born out of resistance. The vibrant colors, the large size of the earrings, the overall unapologetic boldness of the accessories created coincide with Julisa’s radical, left-‐leaning politics which she weaves into Soldadera. The name Soldadera refers to the Mexican freedom fighting women who fought for liberation on the front lines and also from behind the scenes by providing nourishment and support to sustain soldiers in the fight for freedom. The love and commitment to liberation, the honor, pride, boldness, and resistance of revolutionary women and men influences the overall aesthetic of Soldadera. Each piece is thoughtfully made to celebrate and uphold the cultures represented.