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2016 Juror: Pepon Osorio
Pepon Osorio is an installation artist whose work combines Latino popular culture and traditional aesthetic sensibilities to explore culture and community dynamics.
His artistic experiments incorporate common objects such as plastics, baubles, and sequins. His work reveals the rich heritage of Latino communities in both Puerto Rico and New York. Osorio’s many installations, often site specific, are typically embellished with sports items (cards, trophies, boxing gloves, etc.), elaborate fabrics, and industrial materials of unnatural color. These common objects (chucherias) contribute to a vision that celebrates and transcends popular culture, domestic imagery, and the kitsch-laden detritus of contemporary society. He has created a unique style to accommodate these materials while investing them with multilayered meanings.
His major works include The Scene of the Crime (Whose Crime?), featured in the 1993 Whitney Biennial, No Crying in the Barbershop (1994), Badge of Honor (1995), and Los Twines (1998), an installation focusing on conflict resolution between South Bronx youths. His work is represented in the collections of many institutions, including the Walker Arts Center, the Brooklyn Museum, the National Museum of American Art, the El Museo Del Barrio, and the Museo de Puerto Rico.
Osorio received a B.S. (1978) from the City University of New York/Herbert H. Lehman College and an M.A. (1985) from Columbia University.
Artist: Pepón Osorio
Title: Badge of Honor (detail, Son's Bedroom),
Year and location: 1995 at LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art)
Size: 144 x 322 x 144 in. (365.8 x 817.9 x 365.8 cm.)