While the debate about whether or not to build a wall along the Mexican border was keeping the US government occupied for weeks on end, Latin pop surpassed all popularity records among the youngest groups and some even claimed that “the future is Latinx”. What does this word mean?
The publication of the article “America’s Most Expensive Artist Is Latinx – But No One Knows It” (Artsy, June 2017), sparked a reexamination artist biographies such as Carmen Herrera or Jean-Michel Basquiat from a “Latinx” perspective. According to the author of the article, Naiomy Guerrero, Basquiat is known primarily as an Afro-American artist, although his father was born in Haiti and his mother is of Puerto Rican descent. The exclusive positioning of Basquiat as a black artist, Guerrero adds, demonstrates the continuous invisibility of “Latinx” artists on the art market, as well as the historical absence of research on the Latin American experience in the US.
In August 2018, Hyperallergic magazine published an article titled “Latinx Artists Are Highlighted For The First Time In A Group Show at the Whitney”. The article referred to the exhibition Pacha, Llaqta, Wasichay: Indigenous Space, Modern Architecture, New Art curated at the Whitney Museum by Marcela Guerrero. For the first time, the museum, dedicated as it is to living artists in the US, presented a show in which contemporary artists of both Latin American and indigenous descent shared the same space.