New rotation of Museo del Barrio's most ambitious presentation of its permanent collection on view to March 10th
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New rotation of Museo del Barrio's most ambitious presentation of its permanent collection on view to March 10th
Pepón Osorio, ‘La cama,’ 1987. [The Bed]. Mixed media installa+on. Collec+on of El Museo del Barrio, New York.Museum 4/5. Purchase via The Ford Foundation. Photograph by On White Wall.

NEW YORK, NY.- El Museo del Barrio is pleased to announce that the second rotation of its Permanent Collection exhibition, Something Beautiful: Reframing La Colección, is now on view. Something Beautiful, which initially opened to the public in May, is the Museum’s most ambitious display of its Permanent Collection in over twenty years. Organized by Rodrigo Moura, Chief Curator; Susanna V. Temkin, Curator; and Lee Sessions, Permanent Collection Associate Curator, the second rotation expands the exhibition’s scope, showcasing approximately 150 additional artworks by some 60 artists, including 50 new acquisitions that have entered the collection within the last two years.

“It is an honor for El Museo to survey the vast and diverse cultural production of the Americas, including Latinx, Indigenous, and Afro-diasporic artists. The exhibition presents key themes that investigate the complex and nuanced ways in which artists respond to the particular histories of the Americas. We hope this exhibition demonstrates El Museo’s commitment to collecting and exhibiting the artists of our time,” said Patrick Charpenel, Executive Director, El Museo del Barrio.

Something Beautiful cuts across chronological, geographic, and media-specific categories, reconsidering the collection through interdisciplinary approaches rooted in El Museo's history and legacy. Within this model, the contributions of Amerindian, African, and European presences, as well as other diasporic flows, are the basis of visual culture in the Americas and the Caribbean.

As part of the exhibition's research process, the Museum engaged in communal dialogues with more than 40 artists, scholars, community leaders, and museum professionals to explore the rich possibilities of the Collection. These conversations shaped fresh and innovative perspectives on the cultural production of Puerto Rican, Latinx, Caribbean, and Latin American communities as reflected in El Museo del Barrio's vast holdings.

The exhibition curators state, "We're thrilled to continue Something Beautiful with new thematic sections that feature recent acquisitions alongside iconic works. Presented together for the first time, these works attest to the continued evolution, growth, and resonance of El Museo's Permanent Collection."


The second rotation of Something Beautiful is organized into nine sections and four artist spotlights. Sections include:

• Afro-diasporic Modernities brings together artists working in the African diaspora in the Americas and centers spiritual and religious practices such as Candomblé, Umbanda, Vodou, and Santería.

• Figureheads explores the use of political iconography as a key visual strategy in artistic languages and political movements throughout the Americas, and especially in advocacy for Puerto Rican independence.

• Material Construction showcases artists’ use of unconventional materials sourced from the street that speak to conditions of precarity, innovation, and autonomy in urban life.

• Así es la Vida borrows its title from the hit anthem by Boricua rap duo The Latin Empire, celebrating the contributions of Puerto Rican and Latinx artists to New York's urban culture and street art.

• Colors, Names contends with troubling histories of classifying individuals based on the color of their skin and ethnic background and how this history continues to impact our perception of race today.

• Tropical Extraction examines natural resource extraction in Latin America and the Caribbean, and illustrates how landscape, still-life, and other traditional artistic genres historically naturalized the commodification of the region for foreign consumption.

• Arpilleras explores embroidered fabric artworks created under military dictatorship in Chile and how this textile-based tradition came to symbolize resistance to political oppression.

• Craft Crossroads displays works by artists who employ a wide range of craft techniques to challenge hierarchies and emphasize the importance of materials and techniques previously overlooked by the mainstream art world.

• Ocama Aracoel, translating as a call to the ancestors in the Taíno language, remains on view from the first rotation of the exhibition. It emphasizes the core importance of Taíno culture for El Museo by pairing ancestral Taíno forms from the Caribbean with artwork by Nuyorican artists. In early 2024, this section will be supplemented with a new artist commission, entitled Guatu Nakan ("In the middle of the fire"), by Jorge González (b. 1981, San Juan, Puerto Rico; lives in San Juan) and a network of collaborators.

Artist spotlights will feature the works of Edgardo Giménez (b. 1942, Santa Fe, Argentina; lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina), Sophie Rivera (b. 1938, The Bronx, NY – 2021, The Bronx), Pepón Osorio (b. 1955, Santurce, Puerto Rico; lives in Philadelphia, PA), and Jaime Davidovich (b. 1936, Buenos Aires, Argentina – 2016, New York, NY).

• Edgardo Giménez advanced Pop Art in Argentina during the 1960s and 1970s through his posters and design store Fuera de Caja [Out of the Box].

• Sophie Rivera traversed New York City’s boroughs taking photographs of its people and places, including nearly abstract images of the city and its debris.

• Pepón Osorio features La cama, an installation that typifies the artist’s aesthetics of excess and references cultural rituals and the dynamics of public and private spaces that are of special significance to his fellow Puerto Ricans.

• Jaime Davidovich encompasses the many strategies the artist developed as a member of New York’s downtown experimental art scene, including his early adoption of public access TV as a venue for avant-garde performance.


To celebrate Something Beautiful, a corresponding publication, featuring insights from 45 distinguished speakers, brings fresh perspectives on the Collection and its future. This publication takes the form of a conversational mosaic on El Museo's unique institutional role, responsibilities, and opportunities, with contributions from Beverly Adams, Cecilia Fajardo-Hill, Marcela Guerrero, Gala Porras-Kim, Yasmin Ramírez, Taina Traverso, Adriana Zavala, Julian Zugazagoitia, and many more.


José Adário dos Santos (b. 1947, Salvador, Brazil; lives in Salvador); Elia Alba (b. 1962, New York, NY; lives in Queens, NY); José R. Alicea (b. 1928, Ponce, Puerto Rico; lives in Río Piedras, Puerto Rico); Diógenes Ballester (b. 1956, Ponce, Puerto Rico; lives in Ponce and New York, NY); Tony Bechara (b. 1942, San Juan, Puerto Rico; lives in New York, NY); Tony Capellán (b. 1955, Tamboríl, Dominican Republic – 2017, Santo Domingo); Melba Carillo (b. 1941, Marianao, Cuba); Yanira Collado (b. 1975, Brooklyn, NY; lives in Miami, FL); Abraham Cruzvillegas (b. 1968, Mexico City, Mexico); lives in Mexico City); Jaime Davidovich (b. 1936, Buenos Aires, Argentina – 2016, New York, NY); Gabriel de la Mora (b. 1968, Colima, Mexico; lives in Mexico City, Mexico); Frank Diaz Escalet (b. 1930, Ponce, Puerto Rico - 2012, Kennebunkport, ME); Marcos Dimas (b. 1943, Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico; lives in Bronx, NY); Edouard Duval Carrié (b. 1945, Port-au-Prince, Haiti; lives in Miami, FL); Justin Favela (b. 1986, Las Vegas, NV; lives in Las Vegas); Franklin Flores; Coco Fusco (b. 1960, New York, NY; lives in New York, NY); Joel Gaitan (b. 1995, Miami, FL; lives in Miami); Daysi García; Domingo García (b.1932, Coamo, Puerto Rico; lives in Santurce, Puerto Rico); Manuel García (b. 1948, Havana, Cuba); Edgardo Giménez (b. 1942, Santa Fe, Argentina; lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina); Alfredo Jaar (b. 1965, Santiago, Chile; lives in New York, NY); Consuelo Jimenez Underwood (b. 1949, Sacramento, CA; lives in Cupertino, CA); Hubert Kretzschmar (b. 1954, Karlsruhe, Germany; lives in New York, NY); Jarbas Lopes (b. 1964, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; lives in Maricá, Brazil); Antonio Lopez (b. 1943, Utuado, Puerto Rico – 1987, Thousand Oaks, CA); Manabu Mabe (b. 1924, Takara, Japan – 1997, São Paulo, Brazil); Stivenson Magloire (b. 1963, Pétionville, Haiti – 1994, Port-au-Prince, Haiti); Hiram Maristany (b. 1945, New York, NY – 2022, St. Petersburg, FL); César A. Martínez (b. 1944, Laredo, TX; lives in San Antonio, TX); Carlos Jesús Martinez Dominguez "FEEGZ" (b. 1976, Camp Lejeune, NC; lives in New York, NY); Antonio Martorell (b. 1939, San Juan, Puerto Rico; lives in Playa de Ponce, Puerto Rico); Yvette Mayorga (b. 1991, Silvis, IL; lives in Chicago, IL); Héctor Méndez Caratini (b. 1949, San Juan, Puerto Rico; lives in San Juan); Raphael Montañez Ortiz (b. 1934, Brooklyn, NY; lives in Highland Park, NJ); Victor Manuel Navarrete (b. 1947, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba); Francisco Manuel Oller y Cestero (b. 1833, Bayamón, Puerto Rico – 1917, San Juan, Puerto Rico); Gabriel Orozco (b. 1962, Mexico; lives between Paris, New York, and Tokyo); Pepón Osorio (b. 1955, Santurce, Puerto Rico; lives in Philadelphia, PA); Rosana Paulino (b. 1967, São Paulo, Brazil; lives in São Paulo); Rolando Peña (b. 1942, Caracas, Venezuela; lives in Doral, FL);; Miguel Rio Branco (b. 1946, Las Palmas, Canary Islands, Spain; lives in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil); Sophie Rivera (b. 1938, Bronx, NY – 2021, Bronx); Rafael Rivera-Rosa (b. 1942, Comerío, Puerto Rico; lives in Puerto Rico); Luis Fernando Roldán (b. 1955, Cali, Colombia; lives in Bogotá and New York, NY); Juan José Sicre (b. 1898, Carlos Roja, Cuba – 1974, Cleveland, OH); Carmelo Sobrino (b. 1948, Manatí, Puerto Rico; lives in Bayamón, Puerto Rico); Jorge Soto Sánchez (b. 1947, New York, NY – 1987, White River Junction, VT); Chico Tabibuia (b. 1936, Silva Jardim, Brazil – 2007, Barra de São João, Brazil); Nitza Tufiño (b. 1949, Mexico City, Mexico; lives in South Orange, NJ); Rubem Valentim (b. 1922, Salvador, Brazil – 1991, São Paulo, Brazil); Adriana Varejão (b. 1964, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; lives in Rio de Janeiro); Manuel Vega (b. 1956, New York, NY; lives in New York); unidentified artists from Chile; unidentified artists from Haiti, and unidentified artists from Puerto Rico.


Eloy Blanco (b. 1933, Aguadilla, Puerto Rico – 1984, New York, NY); José Caraballo (b. 1930, Santurce, Puerto Rico – 1992, Collegedale, TN); Rafael Colón Morales (b. 1941, Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico – 2021, Arecibo, Puerto Rico); Jorge González (b. 1981, San Juan, Puerto Rico; lives in San Juan); Lorenzo Homar (b. 1913– 2004, San Juan, Puerto Rico); Glendalys Medina (b. 1979, Ponce, Puerto Rico; lives in New York, NY); Carlos Osorio (b. 1927 – 1984, Caguas, Puerto Rico); Wanda Maria Quiñones; Juan Sánchez (b. 1954, Brooklyn, NY; lives in Brooklyn); Francisco Domingos da Silva (Chico da Silva) (b. 1910, Cruzeiro do Sul, Brazil – 1985, Fortaleza, Brazil); Rafael Tufiño (b. 1922, Brooklyn, NY – 2008, San Juan, Puerto Rico); Rafael Tufiño II (b. 1951, Río Piedras, Puerto Rico; lives in New York, NY); and unidentified Taíno artists.

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