Sobremesa (Karaoke Politics) - Press Release / by Daniela Rivera

Sobremesa (Karaoke Politics): A public art project that creates an open platform for discourse in Grove Hall

Maquette for  Sobremesa (Karaoke Politics) /  Photograph: Natalia Leginowicz

Maquette for Sobremesa (Karaoke Politics) / Photograph: Natalia Leginowicz

Sobremesa (Karaoke Politics) will be open and accessible to the public from Sunday, September 8th to late October, 2019. 

Opening Karaoke Event: Sunday, September 8th, from 2 - 5 pm. 

The installation is located in a lot at 48 Geneva Avenue in Grove Hall, Boston, MA. 

August 26, 2019 

Sobremesa (Karaoke Politics) creates an open space for public vulnerability, expression and equity, while standing in recognition of the great value that lies in difference. Envisioned for the Boston neighborhood of Grove Hall, artist Daniela Rivera has created a platform for community discourse that invites community members and the public to step onto a stage of connected tables in order to challenge and traverse the symbolic boundaries of social expectations. Amidst our uncertain political climate, this project aims to open a playful space for gathering where the sharing of individual and cultural expressions is celebrated.

The word and concept of sobremesa refers to a Pan-Hispanic cultural practice that was brought to the Americas by Spanish colonizers. During sobremesa, plates and leftovers as well as conversations and memories begin to literally and figuratively accumulate on top (sobre) of the dinner table (mesa). This outdoor installation features twenty repurposed dining room tables that have been altered to create a joined and singular platform. The table-tops have been stained in different colors to emphasize their place as territories that exist within a larger map. 

The project opens with a community-wide karaoke event on Sunday, September 8th from 2-5 pm. The artist is inviting neighborhood residents and the Boston community at large to submit karaoke songs at The submitted songs will be performed on stage during the opening, as different cultural heritages mix and blur boundaries. The project is supported by the Now + There Public Art Accelerator with in-kind support from The Trust for Public Land. 

Daniela Rviera is a Chilean-born artist whose installation based works span a variety of media including painting, drawing, sculpture, and sound. She is an Associate Professor of Art in the Art Department at Wellesley College. Her work will also be on view in a solo exhibition at the Fitchburg Art Museum entitled Labored Landscapes (Where Hand Meets Ground), from September 21 until January 12, 2020. For more information about this project as well as other work, please visit: