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“PBS NewsHour” at the MFAH: Contributions of Latin American Artists to 20th-Century Art May 29, 2021


Did you catch the recent PBS NewsHour interview with curator Mari Carmen Ramírez at the MFAH? Jeffrey Brown, the chief correspondent for arts, culture, and society at PBS NewsHour, reported on the opening of the Nancy and Rich Kinder Building and talked with Ramírez, the Wortham Curator of Latin American Art and Director of the International Center for the Arts of the Americas. She shared insights about the Museum’s collection of Latin American art and emphasized the artists’ contributions.

“Latin Americans were not just practitioners of 20th-century art,” Ramírez said. “They actively contributed new ideas and new approaches. In this field, we have been fighting from the very beginning against the notion that Latin American art is derivative of U.S. or European art, that everything that Latin Americans did was to follow Picasso or Mondrian or Rauschenberg. And that’s a fallacy.”

Latin American and Latino Art in the Kinder Building
Taking on different styles, forms, and mediums, works of modern and contemporary Latin American and Latino art make up a quarter of the works on view in the Kinder Building—a percentage rarely seen in most U.S. museums, Ramírez explained. “Museums really need to reinvent themselves and reflect the demographics and the profile of the audiences they are serving. This country is living a transformation, and museums need to position themselves to address that transformation.”

Entry to the Kinder Building is included with general admission. Advance tickets recommended.