New Director for the Bronx Museum of the Arts? It’s a Acquainted Identify
Mr. Rodriguez was recruited to the Bronx Museum of the Arts by Holly Block, the museum’s longtime govt director, from the Frost Artwork Museum in Miami in 2017. As deputy director, he oversaw all day by day museum operations, together with managing employees and growing exhibitions. “My very first day on the job was a full board assembly the place I discovered that Holly was stepping down,” Mr. Rodriguez stated. Ms. Block died in October 2017, and he stepped into the de facto function of chief after that, however the high job in the end went to Deborah Cullen-Morales, an out of doors rent. She left after 18 months, and Mr. Rodriguez — once more — took the helm as interim director.
“It’s been a tumultuous few years with the passing of Holly, the pandemic, monetary stresses,” he stated in an interview on Wednesday. “Actually my predominant aim proper now’s to stabilize the ship and make it possible for everyone seems to be steering in the identical course.”
Mr. Rodriguez recalled his childhood as an immigrant in Miami after his household fled the revolution within the late Nineteen Seventies. “The museum is located in a group very very like the one I grew up in,” he stated. He described seeing Picasso’s “Guernica” at age 12 in Madrid’s Prado museum, an expertise that was “completely transformative.” He has been pushed professionally to have interaction college students who had little or no publicity to museums in his function as chief curator on the Frost, a part of Florida Worldwide College, the place he obtained his undergraduate and masters levels in artwork historical past, and now within the Bronx.
Presently on view there are exhibitions by Sanford Biggers, of mixed-media works knowledgeable by the African-American historical past of quilt-making, and by José Parlá, of summary work referencing distressed partitions in city landscapes. Mr. Rodriguez is holding off asserting new exhibitions for the museum’s upcoming fiftieth anniversary yr. “We’ve plans, after all, however it’s pandemic-pending,” he stated.
Mr. Rodriguez has overseen a $20 million capital marketing campaign for a long-planned renovation and enlargement of the museum’s unique constructing, a former synagogue, and the 2006 addition by Arquitectonica. He hopes to pick out an architect within the subsequent six months and break floor inside two years. “It should create a brand new entrance, extra outward-facing to the group,” he stated, and add some galleries.
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