As part of El Museo del Barrio’s year-long initiative ESTAMOS BIEN: LA TRIENAL 20/21, the museum presents a new online artists’ project, Se Que Fue Así Porque Estuve Allí a commissioned photographic archive by artist Xime Izquierdo Ugaz. The digital archive expands on the artist’s ongoing series of photo portraits of their queer chosen family, and features over forty images accompanied by text and audio testimonies. Created in collaboration between the photographer and the sitters, Se Que Fue Así Porque Estuve Allí (I Know It Was So, I Was There) forms a poetic and intimate perspective of a community, who is able to tell their own stories in their own voices.
Reflecting on their practice, Xime explained, “Photography has a history and a present of being used as a tool for surveillance of Black and Brown people, and we have a duty to counter-surveil. In a moment in which extraction and death is so present in our communities, this series has been my way to document the everydayness of our lives and our resilience, and to showcase the beauty that I see in my most intimate moments with all of my fierce, gorgeous, Black & Brown, queer and trans kin.”
Dating from 2017 to the present, the portraits featured in Se Que Fue Así Porque Estuve Allí were taken on rooftops, sandy beaches, living rooms, and other sites, both public and private, between Lima, El Carmen, New York, Boston, Washington DC, and Miami. These photographs, reflecting particular places and moments in the life of the artist and their sitters, will also be on view in El Museo del Barrio’s galleries when ESTAMOS BIEN: LA TRIENAL 20/21 opens in March 2021.
El Museo del Barrio presents ESTAMOS BIEN: LA TRIENAL 20/21, the museum’s first national large-scale survey of Latinx contemporary art featuring more than 40 artists from across the United States and Puerto Rico. The exhibition debuted in summer 2020 with online projects followed by an onsite exhibition in Las Galerías (Galleries) opening March 13, 2021.
Estamos Bien : La Trienal 20/21
March 13 – August 22, 2021
El Museo del Barrio
1230 5th Ave
New York, NY 10029