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Unlocking Puerto Rican History: Attend the “Puerto Rican Archives” Symposium

Unlocking Puerto Rican History: Attend the “Puerto Rican Archives” Symposium

The two-day, free event in Chicago delves into Puerto Rico’s rich history with the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and the National Museum of Puerto Rican Art and Culture

Courtesy of Puerto Rican Cultural Center
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The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA) is cohosting a two-day symposium, Puerto Rican Archives: Preserving Community Memory, alongside the National Museum of Puerto Rican Art and Culture (NMPRAC) and Digitizing the Barrio, an archival project by the Puerto Rican Cultural Center.

This informative event takes place from April 5-6, 2024, and is completely free to attend. One only needs to RSVP to ensure their spot.

The symposium offers a unique chance to learn about Puerto Rican history, activism, community, and the importance of cultural memory.

American Sign Language, CART captioning, and Spanish captioning are all available at the event.

Explore the Significance of Archives

The symposium will delve into the critical role that archives play in preserving the rich cultural and political history of Puerto Rico. Experts will explore the importance of these resources for both the island itself and its diaspora communities.

Local and Global Connections

Through panels, workshops, and a keynote address, attendees will gain insights into the themes of Puerto Rican social movements and community organizations. This focus complements the MCA’s current exhibition, entre horizontes: Art and Activism Between Chicago and Puerto Rico.

Build Understanding and Community

Designed to foster dialogue and learning, the symposium features prominent speakers from prominent representatives of Chicago institutions alongside distinguished guests.

You can find the list of speakers for both days below.

  • Daniel Atkinson, manager of Learning, Adult Interpretive Programs at the MAC
  • José E. López, executive director of the Puerto Rican Cultural Center
  • Margaret Power, codirector of Digitizing the Barrio and president of the board of directors at the Puerto Rican Cultural Center
  • Veronica Ocasio, director of education and programming at the NMPRAC
  • Angélica Hernández, archivist at Digitizing the Barrio
  • Yomaira Figueroa, director of the Center for Puerto Rican Studies (CENTRO) and CUNY Hunter Professor in the Africana, Puerto Rican, and Latino Studies department
  • Herbert Duran, assistant archivist at the CENTRO
  • Cármen T. Pérez, director of the National Library of Puerto Rico
  • Hilda Ayala González, general archivist of Puerto Rico
  • Javier E. Laureano, leader at the Archivo Comunitario LGBTQ+ de Puerto Rico
  • Cristina Fontanez Rodríguez, Virginia Thoren archivist at Pratt Institute Libraries and visiting assistant professor at the Pratt Institute School of Information
  • Diana Ramos Gutiérrez, human rights journalist, arts administrator, and photographer based in Vieques, Puerto Rico
  • Rafael V. Capó García, assistant professor at the University of Puerto Rico at Río Piedras and PhD candidate at the University of British Columbia’s Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy
  • Michael Deutsch, former attorney at the People’s Law Office 

To learn more about the two-day schedule, visit MCA Chicago.

About the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago is a nonprofit dedicated to showcasing contemporary art through exhibitions, performances, and educational programs. They believe in fostering inclusivity and sparking conversation about art’s role in shaping the future. The MCA receives funding from various sources, including memberships, grants, and government support.

About the National Museum of Puerto Rican Art and Culture

The NMPRAC is dedicated to showcasing the artistic and cultural heritage of Puerto Rico. Their Archives and Collections Research Center serves as a vital repository for historical artifacts, documents, and art. These resources illuminate the profound cultural richness of the Puerto Rican community, particularly in Chicago and beyond.

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