American visions/Visiones de las Américas : artistic and cultural identity in the Western Hemisphere. -- New York, N.Y. : ACA Books in association with Arts International, 1994.
Ramírez, Mari Carmen. "Between two waters : image and identity in Latino-American art." In: Jacob, Mary Jane, Noreen Tomassi, and Ivo Mesquita. 1994. American visions/Visiones de las Ame´ricas : artistic and cultural identity in the Western Hemisphere. New York, N.Y.: ACA Books in association with Arts International.
The editorial categories are research topics that have guided researchers during the recovery phase and continue to be the impetus behind the Documents Project’s digital archive and the Critical Documents book series. Developed by the project’s Editorial Board, each of the teams analyzed this framework and adapted it to their local contexts in developing their research objectives and work plans during the Recovery Phase. Learn more on the Editorial Framework page.
In this essay, curator and art historian Mari Carmen Ramírez argues that demographic trends and the emergence of multiculturalism have generated renewed debate about the conditions for representation and identity among marginalized groups. While mainstream institutions have created limited opportunities for the inclusion of Latino artists, Ramírez states that they have also tended at the same time to blur distinctions between individual groups, and between Latino and Latin American artists. In particular, prevalent models of multiculturalism, whether pluralist or radical, tend to privilege race over matters of class, nation and ideology, and fail to account for differences between the position of minorities within the United States and that of artists working outside of this context. According to her, instead of an analysis of how each group constructs identity, multiculturalism offers a reductive notion of U.S. Latino and Latin American identity based on an experience of racism and oppression. She believes that paradoxically, it is through multiculturalism’s valorization of difference and cultural attributes that these artists are given access to mainstream institutions; an apparent openness that understands identity only in relation to dominant culture. To counter this tendency, Ramírez proposes an interdisciplinary approach that provides an analysis of identity beyond the dominant frameworks by accounting for hybridism, fluidity, contemporary practices, and shifting relations between the center and the margins.