The Blanton Museum in Texas Has Added More Than 5,000 Works by Latinx and Chicanx Artists to its Collection

In most U.S. museums, Latinx and Chicanx art continue to be under-represented — if they are represented at all. But this will no longer be the case at the Blanton Museum of Art in Austin, Texas, which has received a massive gift that is likely to make its collection in that area one of the biggest in the country.

Gilberto Cárdenas and Dolores Garcia have given 5,650 works of Latinx and Chicanx art to the Blanton, which is located on the campus of the University of Texas, Austin. The majority of these works are set to remain in the holdings of the Blanton. Yet the Blanton also said it will work to distribute some of these pieces to other U.S. museums in an effort to grow the representation of Latinx art nationwide.

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The gift is meant to complement the Blanton’s expansion of its Latino art initiatives: The museum is set to hire an associate curator of Latinx art using funding from the Mellon Foundation, and it will unveil two galleries specific to that area in March.

Cárdenas and Garcia, who are married, said in a statement, “The Cárdenas/Garcia collection at the museum will provide access to Latino art for the student body and faculty for discovery and research, in addition to serving asa resource for the Austin community. We are confident that the research undertaken by the curatorial staff and the exhibitions and publications that result will represent a valuable contribution to the body of knowledge and understanding of this aspect of American art.”

For 14 years, Cárdenas directed the Inter-University Program for Latino Research, while Garcia was a professor of sociology at UT Austin, where she sought to advance Latino studies.

Below, see artworks from their gift.


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