Members of the Machias-based Beehive Design Collective will be at Bates College in Lewiston on Thursday to talk with students and present a public program about their “Mesoamérica Resiste!” project.

More than nine years in the making, “Mesoamérica Resiste!” is a highly detailed allegorical illustration. It tells the story of people affected by Project Mesoamerica, a proposal to develop infrastructure from Mexico to Colombia that critics say is aimed at extracting natural resources.

The Beehive presentation will use narrative and analysis to organize and engage audiences on the issue.

The collective comes to Bates at the invitation of Sonja Favaloro, an environmental studies major who is writing her senior thesis about artists who use their work in activist ways.

She was introduced to the Beehive at the Common Ground Fair in Unity and attended the collective’s annual Black Fly Ball in Machias in August. The Beehive caught Favaloro’s attention because of its commitment to telling global stories in personal ways.

“Everywhere they go, they give out copies of their posters for free and ask for donations. It’s very much about getting the message out there in a non-commercial kind of way,” she said.

Thursday’s program will begin at 7 p.m. in the Fireplace Lounge at Bates College Commons, 136 Central Ave. Admission is free.

Members of the collective will talk about how they researched the stories that are illustrated in the poster, explain why those stories are important to them and invite people to participate in a discussion.

The event is sponsored by the dance program, the environmental studies program and the office of the Bates-Morse Mountain Conservation Area.

– Bob Keyes, staff writer