The Arts Center Presents

Cultural Kitchen

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With a collaborative spirit, the Cultural District members encourage Fort Worth residents to support local organizations this holiday season! The Fort Worth Community Arts Center brings you a celebration of holiday traditions, cultures, and cuisines. The Arts Center Presents Cultural Kitchen is a new video series where we will celebrate our diversity and histories as viewers will explore and learn how to prepare culturally rich dishes while listening to unique stories that have been passed down from generation to generation.


Now more than ever, it's important to lift everyone up by sharing the unique values of our community. In partnership with Opal’s Farm, the Arts Center will share proceeds of donations received during these programs to support its mission to tackle Tarrant County food deserts. You can learn more about Opal's Farm by clicking here.

Blanca Rosales invites us into her kitchen where she will share how to make Guatemalan tamales and her memories of growing up in Central America. Guatemalan tamales are a mixture of Old and New World; combining Spanish and Mayan cultures and come in a variety of savory flavors and textures. This episode is hosted by Giovanni Valderas, Exhibitions Manager for the Arts Center and Blanca's nephew.


About Giovanni Valderas:

A native of Dallas, Giovanni Valderas is the Exhibition Manager at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center. Valderas graduated from the College of Visual Arts & Design at the University of North Texas with a Master of Fine Arts in Drawing & Painting. His paintings incorporate mixed media elements, such as indigenous fabrics, duct tape, paper, acrylic paint, drawing, and wood. His three-dimensional works address his relationship with his Guatemalan, Mexican, and American ancestry. 

In addition, Valderas recently received the Moss/Chumley Award and a micro-grant from the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas for his guerrilla site-specific project. Most recently, Valderas finished­ his reappointment to the City of Dallas, Cultural Affairs Commission having served under Councilman Omar Narvaez. 

Artist Jihye Han and her close friends introduce us to a traditional Korean favorite, bibimbap. Originally from South Korea, Jihye will share her connection with her homeland and the healing aspects of her favorite comfort food when she misses her family. This easy to make dish is bursting with colorful veggies and flavorful meats which makes for a great meal for the entire family. 

About Jihye Han:

Jihye Han is currently a Master of Fine Arts candidate in ceramics at the University of North Texas. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in sculpture and ceramics from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in 2016. Her recent public arts are exhibited in Fort Worth Community Arts Center for 2020-21. Her work primarily consists of ceramics, but she has also experimented with sculpture and installation. Her research incorporates different methods and processes including ceramic and mixed media work that draws experience from Korean culture.

About Michael Asbill:

Michael Curtis Asbill joined the Arts Council of Fort Worth staff as Fort Worth Public Art's Community Engagement Coordinator in 2019 after working as an Instructor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He received his Master of Fine Arts in Studio (Photography) from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago after graduating from Texas State University. Michael is an artist, public media advocate, and DFW native creating work grounded in local themes and popular media production strategies.

The Arts Center is honored and excited to have Ms. Opal Lee sharing her family’s history, stories, and her favorite holiday dish- black-eyed peas for our final episode of The Arts Center Presents Cultural Kitchen! In this episode, we’ll join Ms. Opal Lee in the garden of Opal's Farm, an organization started by Ms. Lee to alleviate food deserts in underserved communities in and around Tarrant County. This episode is hosted by Angela James, Finance and Human Resources Manager for the Arts Council of Fort Worth.


About Opal Lee:

Opal Lee is a community leader and activist, leading the Juneteenth Walk to DC campaign to make June 19th a national holiday. At 93 years of age, Mrs. Opal Lee still finds time to be a part of the various organizations she helped found, while still leading two very large projects – the Annual Fort Worth Juneteenth Celebration and the urban farming project, Opal’s Farm.

About Angela James: 

Angela L. James, MBA, serves as the Finance and Human Resources Manager for the Arts Council of Fort Worth. Prior to joining the Arts Council, Angela worked in debt collections, auditing, accounting, supervisor of Payment Services, Customer Experience Consultant, and Manager of Finance for Kirkwood Community College. Angela is also a member of Zeta Phi Beta International Sorority, Inc. She is a graduate of the University of Iowa with her bachelor’s degree in Business with a minor in Theater Administration. Angela received her MBA from Mount Mercy University.