Las Nietas de Nonó


 

Las Nietas de Nonó are sisters Lydela (1979) and Michel (1982). They live in Barrio San Antón, a half-rural, half-industrial working class neighborhood of Carolina, Puerto Rico. Their autobiographical work is framed within the socioeconomic and geographical context of the exclusion and eviction of black communities in Puerto Rico, which includes racial and class discrimination, mass incarceration, drug trafficking, obstetric violence, and the cycle of poverty. Their practice also highlights circumstances and elements that are present in their neighborhood: the expansion of ancestral knowledge, the exchange of produce grown in the neighborhood, and the reuse of materials found in the area to create artistic projects.

Las Nietas de Nonó play within the intersection of theater, performance, dance, art, activism, ecology, emancipatory education, and local food. They created Patio Taller in what used to be their paternal grandparents’ home. This space is a house, but it is also a community space, a garden, and a theater, and it is used for public gatherings, performances, international artist residencies, workshops, sustainable agriculture, and cooking. Their work has been presented in Puerto Rico, Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, the United States, and England. In 2017, Las Nietas de Nonó received a Global Arts Fund grant from Astraea.