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In her application for the prestigious Guggenheim Scholarship, Puerto Rican artist Myrna Báez explains why she needs the funds. She begins by stating that she would like to enrich her work through a visual analysis of the nude genre and the way, in Puerto Rican art, it interacts with the landscape, the genre for which she is known. Báez explains that for economic reasons she is forced to teach, which takes away from the time she could spend on her art. Indeed, she is constantly turning down invitations to participate in exhibitions abroad, she explains, because she is not able to produce enough. Báez believes that a year-long grant would allow her to work full time on projects already underway.


Draft of Myrna Báez’s application for the Guggenheim Scholarship. Myrna Báez (San Juan, b. 1931) studied at the Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando [San Fernando Royal Academy of Fine Arts] in Madrid, at the Taller de Gráfica del Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña [Puerto Rican Cultural Institute Print Workshop], where Lorenzo Homar was the director, and at the Graphic Arts Workshop at Pratt Institute in New York. Together with José A. Torres Martinó and other artists, she was a founding member of the Hermandad de Artistas Gráficos [Fraternity of Graphic Artists] in 1981, which was organized to protest the cultural intervention of the annexationist government that was in power at the time. In 1988, the VIII Bienal de San Juan del Grabado Latinoamericano [8th San Juan Biennial of Latin American and Caribbean Prints] honored her as a Puerto Rican artist.

Flavia Marichal Lugo
Museo de Historia, Antropología y Arte, Universidad de Puerto Rico, San Juan, Puerto Rico
Courtesy of Myrna Báez, San Juan, Puerto Rico