In celebration of its 50th anniversary, El Museo del Barrio will present Culture and the People: El Museo del Barrio, 1969–2019, a two-part exhibition featuring selections from the Permanent Collection and a timeline contextualizing the history of the institution with related archival materials. Curated by Susanna V. Temkin, El Museo’s Curator, and co-organized by Noel Valentin, El Museo's Permanent Collection Manager, the exhibition will reflect on the institution’s activist origins and pioneering role as a cultural and educational organization dedicated to Latinx and Latin American art and culture.
Opening April 11, 2019, the first part of the exhibition is comprised of more than 120 artworks by nearly 80 artists from the collection, whose work offers a multitude of perspectives related to core aspects of El Museo del Barrio’s legacy. The second part of the exhibition opens June 11, 2019, which unveils a chronological timeline of the institution's history. The opening coincides with the Museum Mile Festival on June 11, 2019. Both sections will be on view through September 29, 2019. The exhibition borrows its title from an essay penned by one of the Museum’s founders and its first director Raphael Montañez Ortíz, who outlined his concept for the institution in a 1971 article published in Art in America.
"The founding of El Museo del Barrio in 1969 was originated by Puerto Rican educators, artists, and activists under the mission of presenting, preserving, and promoting their art and culture” says Patrick Charpenel, El Museo's Executive Director. “Fifty years later, we recognize the importance of this pivotal historical moment and commemorate this act of cultural resistance. With Culture and the People, we continue to rewrite the history of the United States to include the broad spectrum of cultural and historical contributions by Puerto Rican, Latinx, and Latin American communities."
In addition to the two part-exhibition Culture and the People, El Museo will initiate a cycle of exhibitions dedicated to the Museum's Permanent Collection in 2020. The cycle will focus on specific works from the collection, including room-size installations and in-depth bodies of work, enabling El Museo's curators to work directly with artists, scholars, and conservators to uncover new research and grant further public access to the Museum’s Permanent Collection.