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Chiefs Defensive Line Gets Creative for Hispanic Heritage Month

Posted Sep 21, 2016

Local high school students get an art lesson with Kansas City artist

Kicking off yearly on September 15, National Hispanic Heritage Month celebrates the histories, cultures and contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans to the United States.

In honor of the month, the Kansas City Chiefs hosted an Arrowhead Art Collection workshop with a Kansas City resident and native of Bogota, Colombia, José Faus, who is widely known for his colorful murals throughout the Kansas City area and Arrowhead Stadium.

The Chiefs defensive linemen group joined students from Alta Vista High School for a lesson on culture and art and expression, focusing on the freedom from thought through art.

“The idea was to let it go. Just like you're doodling—making up something as you go along, and then come back and make a choice about what you see and what you created,” Faus said. “This was totally open. Be free, and have a good time.”

Chiefs Dontari Poe, Allen Bailey and rookie Chris Jones joined the students on a breakout session, creating unique drawings relying solely on gestural marks and intuition. Faus encouraged students to “not think” about what they were doing, allowing the creative process to naturally unfold.

“[We learned] to not think—just to go out there and move it around,” Chiefs defensive lineman Dontari Poe said. “That was kind of fun to see because you don’t think when you're just scribbling and doing stuff like that, but it does create a picture at the end of the day. It was fun to just do it.”

Both the students and players collaborated to create 24 pieces of their individual artwork, which they then combined to make one giant, unique piece of art that existed “for that moment and that moment only.”

“I love doing stuff like this,” Poe added. “I was once in their position. I was once a child looking up to somebody. So for me to be the person they're looking up to and just come in and have fun with them, it’s a blessing within itself.”

Following the lesson, representatives from Tico Sports, the Spanish radio broadcaster of the Kansas City Chiefs, then wrapped up the event by encouraging students to embrace their heritage and its rich traditions.

“I feel like this is great for the community—to get out and do different things with different kids in honor of different heritages. You learn more about the community itself,” Jones said.

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This event leads into the Chiefs annual Hispanic Heritage Month Fútbol Americano game on Sunday, September 25, at Arrowhead Stadium. Hispanic Heritage Month began on September 15, the anniversary of independence for five Latin American countries, including Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. This marks the fifth consecutive year that the Chiefs have recognized Hispanic Heritage Month by collaborating with Alta Vista High School.

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