Chicago, IL – The National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture is pleased to present for the first time in Chicago Material, a group exhibition featuring Bobby Cruz, Hector Madera, Jonathan Torres, Nora Maité Nieves, Luis Rodríguez Rosario, Omar Velázquez, Roberto Marquez-Jorge and Sebastián Vallejo on Thursday, May 5th, 2016 at 6:00pm.
This exhibition brings together a group of renowned contemporary Puerto Rican artists established and working in different media (traditional and non traditional), derived from painting expanding to three-dimensional pieces through sculpture and installation. It brings together their artistic cultural heritage and represents the contemporary environment of their surroundings. This collective of artists are originally from Puerto Rico and have been immersed in the diaspora experience. Not only the medium and their nationality brings them together, but their outstanding representations through their artwork as internationally known artists.
Excluding Bobby Cruz, who is a local Puerto Rican artist graduated from the School of Visual Arts in San Juan, PR; most of them live in the diaspora pursuing their artist careers between New York, Chicago and Florida. Hector Madera and Jonathan Torres are graduates from Brooklyn College and live and work between New York City/ Puerto Rico. Omar Velázquez and Luis Rodríguez Rosario are graduates from the MFA program in the School of the Art Institute, live and work in Chicago. Nora Nieves is also a graduate from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, resided in Chicago for seven years and currently lives and works in New York City. Roberto Marquez-Jorge is a graduate from University of South Florida and is also a Professor in this institution. Sebastián Vallejo is a graduate from School of the Art Institute Chicago and currently lives and works in New York.
Material is the second edition of an exhibit that was organized by Martin Albarrán, director of La Productora, an alternative exhibitions space located in Santurce, Puerto Rico. This is the first time it will be presented in Chicago. In this edition, two more artists were included with the purpose of elaborating further the concept of the diaspora, through their contemporary representations. This provides an idea of a portable identity and a reaction towards the act of migration.
Material is the matter from which a thing is or can be made. It is also facts or ideas from which new work is created. The main materials used and presented in their works provide a visually tangible experience creating new objects of appreciation through a universal language. Each art piece is a representation of their natural environment and the ways they express through the medium. The first glance of the saturation of colors, textures and materials used, talk mostly about that transition influenced by another environment and the reaction to it as some kind of self-preservation process.
Material opens in May 5th, 2016 and will be open to the public until November 30th, 2016. The National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture is located in 3015 West Division Street Chicago, IL 60622. For more information, you may contact Bianca Ortiz Decletbiancao@nmprac.org or call (773) 486-8345.