Dos Mundos: (Re)constructing Narratives, curated by Juanita Lanzo and Stephanie A. Lindquist, arrived at The Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art on Sep. 12 and will stay through Nov. 22. Its mission is to challenge (or reconstruct) the way we view immigrant and ethnic cultures around the world.
Housed in the Sara Bedrick Gallery, Dos Mundos showcases the photographs of 12artists of color who are recipients of En Foco’s Photography Fellowships. There are individual sections, or mini ‘shows,’ for each photographer, consisting of three photographs (give or take a photo depending on the artist). Each sequence of photographs illuminates the dos mundos, or two worlds in immigrant and ethnic communities, educating the viewer that these communities cannot and will not be represented by only one narrative.
Inspired by the 1973 Dos Mundos exhibition, Dos Mundos: Reconstructing Narratives, works to not only modernize the presentation of duality in these cultures, but also to “[challenge the] systemic exclusion from the mainstream as described by the 1973 exhibition,” according to the Dorsky Website.
One of the gifts that this exhibition has to offer is the chance to hear the artists speak about their work while it is being viewed. Beside each section of photographs, there is a QR code. Scan it with your smartphone camera, and you are instantly directed to the media section of En Foco’s website.
All you have to do is hit play and you are treated to a one to two minute talk by the artist on their collection. This is extremely special because not only can one sense the theme of the exhibition, but they have the capability of listening to the personal views, opinions and stories of voices that are too often marginalized. You can also listen to the artists here, and view their work here.
Antonio Pulgarin’s section of a photographic collage is just one example of how personal work, healing and exploration is blended into the theme of the show to create a rich and powerful narrative for marginalized communities.
“I’m Colombian American and I identify as also Latinx and Queer,” said Pulgarin in his En Foco Audio Recording. “The items featured are cultural relics that belong to both myself and my uncle. He’s the man that I share my namesake with.
“He passed away two years prior to me being born. Over the years, there was constant comparisons, like, ‘Oh, Antonio did that’ . . . ‘Your tio would always act this way. Originally, the project started with really trying to resolve this relationship that I had with this man, but started morphing and developing into sort of looking at this blueprint of masculinity and machismoism and how that related to my identity.”
The goal of Dos Mundos: Reconstructing Narratives is not for different cultures to be viewed, judged or analyzed. The goal is to encourage communities to look within themselves, digging up the hidden stories that make them unique and sharing those stories with the world — a world which may see these communities in only one light.
“I think for me, the overall narrative is about having these conversations within the Latinx community . . . even the term Latinx is still something that, amongst an older generation, is so controversial, because it challenges tradition. This idea is part of my practice,” Pulgarin said.