Memorialization and Presence: Capturing the Legacies of the Young Lords in New York

This essay reviews the three-venue exhibition ¡Presente! The Young Lords in New York, which opened in July of 2015 at the Bronx Museum of the Arts, El Museo del Barrio and the Loisaida Center in the Lower East Side. It assesses the three significantly different approaches of these institutions to capturing the visual and performative legacy of the Young Lords, a radical decolonial Nuyorican group of the early 1970s whose political activism engaged communities to transform space through artistic practices. In critically surveying these three approaches, this essay means to explore the cultural, art-historical, and political stakes of exhibitions like ¡Presente!, in which different kinds of loyalty and conceptions of legacy come into contact.

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