Carballo, José. "[When I was shown a preview of the paintings which El Museo del Barrio had acquired through the years for their permanent collection...]." In Recent Acquisitions, Museo del Barrio, October / November 1978. Exh. cat., New York: Museo del Barrio, 1978.
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In this brief artist statement, Puerto Rican-born artist José Caraballo posits that El Museo del Barrio’s exhibition of recent acquisitions serves as a reminder of the existence of Puerto Rican artists, and their struggle for recognition in the history of art. He thanks El Museo del Barrio for taking the initial step of acquiring and exhibiting the work of contemporary Puerto Rican artists. Caraballo warns, however, that the works of these artists should circulate further in art magazines and additional exhibitions in order to gain historical value.
Founded in 1969, El Museo del Barrio was the first Puerto Rican museum established in New York City. In the 1990s, the mission of El Museo del Barrio was revised to present and preserve the art and culture of Puerto Ricans and all Latin Americans in the United States. The 1978 Recent Acquisitions exhibition catalogue was the first attempt by El Museo del Barrio to showcase its collection of contemporary art. The artists in the show were: John Balossi, Eli Barreto, Jose Caraballo, Harry Cosme, Jesse Fernández, Domingo Garcia, Gilberto Hernández, Epifanio Irizarry, Claudio Juárez, Carlos Osorio, Samuel Quiñones, Carlos Raquel Rivera, Félix Rodriguez Báez, Radamés Santos, Jorge Soto, Carmelo Sobrino, Nitza Tufiño, Rafael Tufiño, and Pedro Villarini.