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Polemic || Javier Maldonado-O'Farrill || Back

Oye Gringo
After 2 months of extreme quarantine in Puerto Rico in which we managed to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus, we are facing the highest rate of positive cases and hospitalizations. With no means to control the airport as our main border we are left unable to stop the entry of tourists from the United States, the current epicenter of the pandemic. To make matters worse, many refuse to wear the mask believing themselves to be above local regulations and guided by disinformation campaigns led by Donald Trump. Our sacrifices cannot be in vain. They are not welcome. The virus is the colony.

Ahora + que nunca
"The coronavirus has exposed the immense weaknesses of Puerto Rico's health system. Health should not be a commodity through which profit is sought, but a fundamental human right for all people. Alternatives such as nationalizing hospitals and establishing a universal health plan are proposals that should be at the center of public discussion." From the article COVID-19 and the Collapse of Private Hospitals in Puerto Rico by Abner Dennis.

Javier Maldonado-O'Farrill has an MFA in Printmaking and Painting from Rochester Institute of Technology and a BA in Fine Arts from the University of Puerto Rico. In 2004, he joined Puerto Rico Indymedia collective as a photographer and organizer. Later in 2005, he joined the AgitArte project and recently became co-director of the Papel Machete collective.

His work has been shown in Puerto Rico, Miami, San Francisco, Boston, Vermont, New York, Japan, Spain, Portugal, Dominican Republic and Cuba. He is an adjunct professor at the School of Fine Arts of San Juan, and teaches the Digital Printmaking course at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras campus.

Polemic is funded in part by the New York State Council on the Arts and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs

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