Sanhareb Nano

v i s u a l i z i n g   i m m i g r a n t   P h o e n i x


I was born and raised in Iraq. My family and I migrated to the United States in 2012. As a first-generation immigrant from Iraq, I have deep awareness and collective understanding of the immigration topic in the United States, especially in high immigration status states like Arizona. I am a communication student at Arizona State University with the knowledge of conducting research studies within small communities. I am also a trilingual, I speak Assyrian, Arabic and English fluently. My relationship with the Middle-Eastern immigrant community in Phoenix will expand our team’s ability to interact, interview and attend social events hosted by those groups. Visualizing Immigrant Phoenix is an exciting opportunity to help compliment and expand my knowledge about the unfamiliar cultures and ideology of Phoenix’s immigrants.

Que Colores! Tires and Tacos in Phoenix

Sanhareb Nano 2018


Video created for Displacements, a virtual conference sponsored by the Society for Cultural Anthropology & the Society for Visual Anthropology, April 19-21, 2018. (3:35) (MORE videos)


Proliferation of taquerias and tire shops reveals the growing Mexican community displaced to metro Phoenix. Taquerias bring the authentic flavor of Mexican food to our city. The maturity of the immigrant community is shown by restaurants offering regional cuisines from specific Mexican states and cities—such as Tacos Tijuana. Mexican-run tire shops or llanteras import another aspect of Mexican culture. Tire shops add dazzling colors to our cityscape by making an artist’s canvas of their exterior walls, like llanteras in Mexico. Migrants play an essential role by launching businesses that bring cultural values and vibrant ideas to Phoenix.

Immigrants Bring Authentic Tijuana Tacos to Arizona

A family-run taco truck started by Mexican immigrants became Tacos Tijuana, a restaurant transporting the authentic flavors of hometown Tijuana to metro Phoenix.

Llanteras DE colores

This curated series of exceptionally colorful tire shops, or llanteras, shows the growing presence of shared Mexican culture across metro Phoenix. The clientele is largely of Mexican or Latino descent, often from a family of first or second-generation immigrants.

From the Somali Highlands to Phoenix’s New Frontier

The Isra Market is a small immigrant-run shop on McDowell Road, but its role in the Somali refugee community in Phoenix is much larger. Cultural entrepreneurs help diaspora communities gain their strength and self-sufficiency, and revitalize the local economy.

Taqueria el Guerrerense & McDowell Road Murals

By Nina Rocket and Sanhareb Nano

Visit a local migrant-run , multi-tasker restaurant and Xochipala-style bakery from the state of Guererro, Mexico. It also offers income tax help and other services to the Mexican immigrant community. Vibrant murals enliven the cityscape and educate viewers about crossborder events and culture.