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10 Emerging Contemporary Artists From Puerto Rico You Need to Know

Picture of Mariela Santos
Updated: 5 May 2017

There are many contemporary artists from Puerto Rico (PR) making a name for themselves in the world of contemporary art. The selection below use a variety of mediums to convey their messages and their works have been exhibited in many locations, but all are tied some way to this Caribbean nation. Read about the following 10 artists contributing to Puerto Rico’s emerging art scene.

Beatriz Santiago Muñoz

A graduate of the University of Chicago and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, she specializes in film and video work. Notable videos include Useless Factory (brica Inútil), and Archive (Archivo). Her work has been exhibited in Puerto Rico and Los Angeles, among other locations.

Osvaldo Budet

Budet has had much of his work exhibited in Puerto Rico and Germany. For example, his pieces have been shown at the Museum of Contemporary Art (San Juan, PR), the National Gallery (San Juan, PR), Filipp Rosbach Galerie, (Leipzig, Germany), and Zimmer 11 (Berlin, Germany). Examples of his work can currently be seen on the Walter Otero Contemporary Art gallery website; they consist of photographs combined with ink drawn onto photograph paper.

Angel Otero

The Puerto Rican artist based out of Chicago and New York, studied at the University of Puerto Rico and obtained a BFA and MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Thus far, much of his work has been exhibited in Chicago and Puerto Rico. Otero specializes in paintings.

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Jesús “Bubu” Negrón

Negron’s art has been exhibited internationally in countries such as Mexico, Puerto Rico, the United Kingdom, and Italy. According to his website, his “work is characterized by minimal interventions, the re-contextualization of everyday objects and a relational approximation to artistic production as a revealing act of historical, social and economic proportions.”

Livia Ortiz

From Arecibo, Puerto Rico and with an MFA from the Memphis College of Art in Studio Arts, Ortiz is based out of New York and Puerto Rico. Her art has been displayed at venues in Louisiana and New York, among others. She produces her works with oil and spray paint on acetate but also uses other materials.

Untitled, 2016, 48x36IN, oil paint in acetate

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Mónica Rodríguez

Mónica Rodríguez has participated in both solo and group exhibitions, and some of her work has also been shown internationally. Rodriguez is a graduate of the School of Plastic Arts in Puerto Rico and the California Institute of the Arts. In addition, she studies at the Whitney Museum Independent Study program in New York. She uses various techniques to create her work.

Axel Ruiz

A graduate of the School of Plastic Arts in Puerto Rico, Ruiz is a recipient of an Arnaldo Roche Foundation award. His work has been shown throughout San Juan, including at the Walter Otero Contemporary Art gallery and at an exhibition by the Institute of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture. A notable aspect of many of his pieces is the use of color.

Radamés “Juni” Figueroa

According to the Whitney Museum of American Art, where Figueroa has shown some of his work, he’s a trained painter that also works on creating environments that resemble San Juan. He set up the artist run space, La Loseta; other projects include the installation, Tree House – Casa Club.

Myritza Castillo

Castillo’s works as a visual artist and photographer and her artworks have been exhibited in international group exhibitions. As her website says, some of her pieces can be found in private and public collections such as in the Museum of Art, Puerto Rico and the National Gallery of Prague, Czech Republic. Castillo is a graduate from the University of Puerto Rico and the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

Miguel Luciano

Luciano holds and MFA and BFA from the University of Florida. His work has been exhibited internationally in Puerto Rico, Brazil, and the United States, among other countries. He has received various awards and participated in the smART power program, funded by the Bronx Museum of the Arts and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Luciano lives and works in New York.