My Shadow Box

By:Juan Mendoza Avila

I have chosen to include the U.S flag because it is one of my counter narratives for when people call me an illegal immigrant.Which,I am not because I have a U.S nationality.When people find out I am Mexican they jump to assumptions that I am going to drop out or even maybe be nothing in life.In my Shadow box I added pictures of my promotions.I am working towards graduating high school and as well, even go to college and get a degree.One of the dominant narratives I decided to put was that just because I am male I am supposed to like and play sports although I do play sports I am more of a gamer that is why the controller is their.Also,I have played video games my whole life since I was 6.When people find out I am Mexican they will assume I am dangerous but I am not whatsoever I am actually a very calm person and nice.I have a lot of patience and if people got to know me they wouldn’t assume these things.I chose to put the color red around my box and inside because it is my favorite color but as well, to show that the color can be used and not represent gang colors or gang affiliation.Our society have a lot of assumptions about the color red that if you wear it your part of some gang but what if they are not and they just really like the color and.As well, they might get the wrong idea about the person.


CC BY-SA 4.0 Juan’s Shadow Box by Juan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. Doyoung 5 months ago

    Dear Juan,
    It’s astonishing to hear how people assume so many things about you simply because of your ethnicity. I hope you are able to further pursue your studies and interest in gaming!

  2. Kelly 12 months ago

    Dear Juan Mendoza,

    I really like you shadow box because it has a lot of pictures. I also really like the flags you put to represent where you where from. One part of your artwork that stands out to me is the promotion pictures you added. I think is was a great idea to add them because it shows that you were successful in your other schools and that you will continue to do good in school. Another part of your artwork that stood out to me was the color you put on the outside which was red. That stood out to me because people do think that red is related to a gang even if it can be more. Thanks for your shadow box. I look forward to what you make next because I know it will be great.
  3. Tania 12 months ago

    Dear Juan,
    I like your artist statement a lot because you put in very detail what you have in your box. Also what you said about the color red, I agree that it’s not just a “gang color” it can be more than that. One sentence that you wrote that stood out to me was that people make assumptions just because your Mexican. That your not gonna graduate and that your just gonna drop out of school, but no we as Mexicans want a good life to pass and go to college like you explained. Your artist statement reminds me of something that happened to me. One time my dad had told me to not get red shoes because its gang color, but it’s not just that like you explain. It’s just a normal color. Thank you for writing. I look forward to seeing what you write next, because you have such an amazing perspective and I like the way you think.

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CC BY-SA 4.0All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License


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