Danielle de Jesus
In Conversation with Gardeners Jose Alicea and Gina Rosario
La Finca Garden is easy to miss—it’s located on a narrow lot on a commercial street in Bushwick. But it was one of the first stops for artist Danielle de Jesus, whose work is featured in Life Between Buildings, after she returned to the neighborhood where she grew up. Jose, the head gardener at La Finca, remembers meeting Danielle: “She got out of this taxi and said: ‘Just leave me in front of that little yard because I want to see if it's still there.’ And I see this young lady come crossing the street with that big smile on her face.” Danielle created a portrait of Jose and his wife Gina on this dollar bill, one of many of her explorations of green spaces in Bushwick.
Danielle, Jose, and Gina sat down to discuss the garden as a site of communion, Bushwick's Nuyorican culture, and a history of the Puerto Rican flag you might not know. Hear their conversation below.