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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

Latinx Abstract


BRIC / New York / Art

When Hurricane Maria tore through Puerto Rico, leaving physical devastation in its wake, the impact was felt far beyond the Island. As the Chicago-based artist Candida Alvarez told ARTnews this year, “It felt like I had lost this connection to family, to the land.” During that time, Alvarez found relief in abstract painting—on canvas, on napkins, on vellum. Latinx American art has a rich tradition of abstraction, though this relationship has usually been ignored or overlooked, because art-historical narratives tend to center white voices and artists, and because the community’s art is traditionally associated with culturally specific figures, symbols, and meanings. To correct the record and upend assumptions, this exhibition brings together 10 contemporary artists of Latin American descent—including Alvarez—who range broadly both in experience and medium but share a commitment to communicating through the gestural, geometric, shapeless, and unreal. —C.J.F.

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