(R)evolution: Identity and Power in Puerto Rican and Diasporican Art

March 22 – June 8, 2024

The centerpiece and inspiration for this exhibition, which reflects upon colonialism and Puerto Rican resistance, is Miguel Luciano’s painting Cómo se dice Boricua en Inglés (1998), created in response to the centennial of the U.S. annexation of Puerto Rico following the Spanish-American War. The painting features a machete-wielding vejigante, the demon/trickster figure associated with the Loiza Aldea festival of Santiago Apostôl, in confrontation with Uncle Sam, alluding, together with smaller vignettes, to such issues as suppression of native language and culture, economic colonialism, and racial and ethnic stereotypes and hierarchies. Bringing works about these issues by other artists together with Miguel Luciano’s painting, the exhibition sheds light on Puerto Rico’s historic and contemporary challenges.

In addition to Miguel Luciano, other artists in the exhibition include Antonio Martorell, Juan Sánchez, Pablo Delano, Allora & Calzadilla, Yasmín Hernández, ADÁL, Omar Velázquez, and Ernest Lopez. A group of posters associated with the Puerto Rican Socialist Party (PSP) provide additional context.

The exhibition is supported in part by the Karen L. Chase Fund and a donation from an anonymous foundation.

Image Caption: Miguel Luciano (b. 1972). Cómo se dice Boricua en Inglés, 1998. Acrylic on wood, 48 x 84 inches. Lent by Anthony De Jesús and Madeline Pérez De Jesús. © 1998, Miguel Luciano.

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