Exhibit: Open Windows

4/17/2008 Bump:

Last chance to check this exhibit out this weekend.


Starting this Sunday, at the Hoboken Historical Museum.


Open Windows:

12 Views of Hoboken Places and Faces
Photographs by Arturo Portillo

“Wherever he lives, Guatemalan-born artist and photographer Arturo Portillo is inevitably drawn to local museums. He’s currently pursuing a graduate degree in museum studies at New York University, and discovered Hoboken as a convenient place to live last year. He approached the Museum to volunteer for any project that would tap into his artistic skills and affinity for museums. Museum Director Bob Foster recruited Portillo to help the Museum photograph the 17 buildings in the Mile Square City that are on the National Register of Historic Places. The project supported his current studies, and is the latest in a long series of museum projects he’s been involved in ever since he was a student in Guatemala City.

hoboken-arturo-portillo.jpgPortillo likes to explore Hoboken on his daily commute to NYU, deliberately choosing different routes from the northern end of town to the PATH train. Though he’s an architecture buff, Portillo says that a city’s true character is found in the faces of its people, not just its building facades.

He was inspired to combine the two themes in photographic compositions that superimpose portraits of Hobokenites in the windows and archways of his favorite buildings. The resulting images will be on display in an exhibit titled, “Open Windows: 12 Views of Hoboken Places and Faces,” in the Upper Gallery of the Museum from March 9 through April 20. Everyone is invited to come meet the artist at the opening reception from 2 ­ 5 p.m. on Sunday, Mar. 9th. Admission is free. Portillo will give an illustrated slide talk on Sunday, April 13 at 4 p.m.

He fell in love with Hoboken, he says, because its scale and trees remind him of his neighborhood in Guatemala City; but he’s also fascinated by its differences. “It’s more manageable than a big city ­ you get to see some of the same people on a regular basis, and people are pretty friendly,” he says. He particularly loves the festivals and parades, where many of the faces in the exhibit were snapped.

Portillo has been involved in planning and designing museum spaces and educational programs, including the National Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology and the Metropolitan Cultural Center, both in Guatemala City, and El Museo del Greco in Toledo, Spain. His artistic and photographic works have been exhibited in many different institutions and galleries.”

See some more of Arturo Portillo’s photos here.

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Where is located? How much to get in?