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A B O U T 


  

A Message from the Director

“Today is paradise overcast” – James Magee

James Magee opens his video “Paradise Overcast” with those lines. It is part of the Rubin Center’s online exhibition El Balcón Fronterizo featuring artists from El Paso and Juarez responding to these unprecedented times. They are answered by voices from the international companion series El Balcón, like artist Rebecca Chesney who accompanies a still frame video of her London rooftop with voices of female artist friends from around the world, describing in their native languages, their domestic and creative lives during a global pandemic. Nandita Kumar begins her video from India with vibrant images of the gulmohar tree outside of her studio, which she tells us takes 45 years to flower, celebrating that this flowering has coincided with the crisis we have all been living through.

In a year that has brought extraordinary challenges we find ourselves being extraordinarily grateful for the way the work of the Rubin Center has connected us to a community of artists and others, both locally and around the globe, who have confronted this crisis with creativity, generosity and commitment to a better tomorrow.   

  • We have launched a variety of online educational opportunities including Artists in the 915, our virtual Family Days series and our inaugural Teen CoLab program
  • We joined with interdisciplinary arts partners at UTEP to create UTEP Arts Alive, a performance series that used culture as a virtual connection to campus for those who could not be physically present.   
  • We’ve installed three current exhibitions in our galleries that will open in the new year both virtually and in real life as conditions permit, featuring two new curatorial voices and the work of two talented Juarez -based artist collectives.   
  • We’ve made extraordinary progress working remotely on upcoming exhibitions by Gaku Tsutaja, Chico Macmurtrie and Minerva Cuevas, in partnership with local collaborators like El Paso Fab Lab.
  • We’ve kept our talented student staff engaged and employed from remote locations, using their skills in design, video, social media and education and learning alongside our professional staff how to respond to this new landscape in ways that are flexible, relevant and meaningful.

 Together we are reimagining what it means to be the place where contemporary art meets contemporary life and are deeply grateful that so many of you have joined us on the journey. Today is overcast to be sure, but through the work of visionary artists here on the border and around the world, and the generosity of our community of supporters, we can see the outlines of something beautiful.      

In gratitude,

Kerry Doyle

Vision

 

Where Contemporary Art Meets Contemporary Life

Mission

 We offer our geographically isolated region a direct experience with contemporary art of international recognition and importance. We serve as a learning site for students from the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and the surrounding community by creating opportunities for student involvement in the planning and execution of exhibitions and outreach, and through formal and informal educational opportunities for audiences of all ages. 


We maintain a three-part curatorial focus on:
1) Site-specific works that bring renowned artists to our border community to create one of a kind installations;
2) Art that responds to our geographic and political location at the epicenter of the Americas.
3) Exhibitions that explore interdisciplinary and participatory and community based practices in contemporary art.
We strive to deepen public appreciation of contemporary art and to inspire active dialogue about its social, political and cultural implications through dynamic and interdisciplinary programming, providing a framework for critical thinking about contemporary art and its place in our world. We promote the highest standard of excellence in every aspect of our work.