Puerto Rican Artists Explore Debt at the Whitney Biennial

Posted on March 16, 2017 by Erick Rios

This year's Whitney Biennial lands at a controversial time in the US. Occupy Museums, a group borne out of the Occupy Wall Street decided to focus on debt as a theme this biennial. They had a call for Debt Fair art submissions that culminated in choosing 30 artists to exhibit at the Whitney Biennial. Included in their debt theme was a special call for Puerto Rican artists affected by the Puerto Rican debt crisis. The selected artists were: 

Gamaliel Rodriguez
Melquiades Rosario
Nibia Pastrana Santiago
Sofia Maldonado
Celestino Ortiz
Jose Soto
Gabriella Torres-Ferrer
Adrian Roman
Yasmin Hernandez
Norma Vila
Puerto Rican Artists Participating in Whitney Biennial Independently:
Chemi Rosado
Bea Santiago
Photo from the Frames and Stretchers reception to celebrate the Puertorican participants in the Whitney Biennial .
An interview taking place during the reception. 

Occupy Museums's mission is to call out economic and social injustice propagated by institutions of art and culture. They aim to reinforce the idea that art is not a luxury. The 2016 announcement of Puerto Rico's inability to pay back it's debt was not a total surprise, as unemployment and foreclosures had been rising on the Island. However, the citizens are left with most of the consequences for the debt. For the Debt Fair, Occupy Museums talks about the number of American artists who gradate from MFA programs in debt and what that means for the future of art. To learn more about the artists included, check out their links above. For further information about the Puerto Rican Debt Crisis this Huffington Post article is a good place to start. 

Photo from the Frames and Stretchers reception to celebrate the Puertorican participants in the Whitney Biennial .

Our refreshments for the reception. 
We hosted a reception on Wednesday, March 15, 2017 from 6pm-9pm in our studio at The Clemente Soto-Velez Cultural Center . Pictures are up on our Facebook and Instagram pages as well as below. 


Frames and Stretchers Whitney Biennial celebration graphic.

Posted in artists, custom framing, frames and stretchers, Lower East Side, nyc, Puerto Rico, puerto rico debt crisis, techniques, tri state area, whitney biennial