NO EXISTE UN MUNDO POSHURACÁN: PUERTO-RICAN ART IN WHITNEY MUSEUM
The exhibition explores how artists have responded to the transformative years since the hurricane by bringing together more than fifty artworks made over the last five years by an intergenerational group of more than fifteen artists from Puerto Rico and the diaspora.
No existe un mundo poshuracán—a verse borrowed from Puerto Rican poet Raquel Salas Rivera—is the first scholarly exhibition focused on Puerto Rican art to be organized by a large U.S. Museum in nearly half a century.
While Hurricane Maria serves as a focal point, the exhibition is defined by a larger context in which the aftermath of the storm was further exacerbated by the chain of events that preceded and followed this (un)natural disaster, including the austerity measures implemented by the PROMESA law (also known as La Junta); the deaths of 4,645 Puerto Ricans as a consequence of the Hurricane; the protests during the Verano del 19 (Summer of 2019) that led to the ouster of governor Ricardo Rosselló; the string of earthquakes; the COVID-19 pandemic; and much more. As a response to these constant existential threats, the exhibition offers a platform to the artists and the ways they have forged paths through the wake of these legacies.
The exhibition is divided in five sections to analyze the Hurricane’s impact on different dimensions: Fractured Infrastructures; Critiques of Tourism; Processing, Grieving, and Reflecting; Ecology and Landscape; and Resistance and Protest.
These artworks interrogate the ways that the hurricane also laid bare Puerto Rico’s dated infrastructures, which failed residents when they were at their most vulnerable. The fragile electrical grid, for instance, left thousands without power for months after the storm and remains unreliable today. Also, they remember those lost, and examines the cycle of violence and death in the colonial territory.
Artists participating: Candida Alvarez, Gabriella N. Báez, Rogelio Báez Vega, Sofía Córdova, Danielle De Jesus, Frances Gallardo, Sofía Gallisá Muriente, Miguel Luciano, Javier Orfón, Elle Pérez, Gamaliel Rodríguez, Raquel Salas Rivera, Gabriela Salazar, Armig Santos, Garvin Sierra Vega, Edra Soto, Awila Sterling-Duprey, Yiyo Tirado Rivera, Gabriella Torres-Ferrer, Lulu Varona.