José Gómez Sicre’s Eye

Works from The Art Museum of the Americas’ Permanent Collection

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Banana (1971/1971) by Antonio Henrique AmaralArt Museum of the Americas

With this selection of works from the Organization of American States AMA | Art Museum of the Americas’s permanent collection, the museum celebrates the centennial of the birth of its founder, José Goméz Sicre (Matanzas, Cuba 1916 – Washington, DC, USA 1991).

Solemn Pact (1980/1980) by Manabu MabeArt Museum of the Americas

José Goméz Sicre's tenure began in 1946 with what was then known as the Pan-American Union (PAU) and renamed in 1948 as the Organization of American States (OAS). His forty-five years of service resulted in an extensive legacy of exhibitions, publications, historic archives, documentary films, and a museum with an unsurpassed permanent collection of modern and contemporary Latin American and Caribbean art.

Hermala II (1948 - 1948) by Roberto MattaArt Museum of the Americas

Latin-American Artists Internationally Known 

Prior to José Gómez Sicre's Tenure at the OAS (1946-1982)

José Gómez Sicre’s Eye shows the personal and critical vision of a curator and director of the Visual Arts Unit who initiated the OAS permanent art collection, showcasing different “accents” of the region, as he would refer to the various styles of the 40’s-70’s.

Familia Andina (1944 - 1944) by Héctor PoleoArt Museum of the Americas

His curatorial work aligned with the mission of the OAS, reflecting mid-to-late-20th century sociopolitical context.

La Última Serenata (1937/1937) by Emilio PettorutiArt Museum of the Americas

The first section features modern masters who had already earned international recognition by the time Gómez Sicre began working at the PAU in 1946.

Return to the Fair (1940 - 1940) by Candido PortinariArt Museum of the Americas

While at times controversial or tenacious, Goméz Sicre was a pioneer of promoting Latin American modern art in the United States, introducing young and emerging artists to U.S. audiences.

Estudiante Muerto (1956 - 1956) by Alejandro ObregónArt Museum of the Americas

Young Latin-American Artists Who José Gómez Sicre Promoted During His Tenure at the OAS

Paisagem Cosmica No.2 (1963 - 1963) by Danilo di PreteArt Museum of the Americas

The second section shows work of then-emerging Latin American and Caribbean artists whose US careers he helped to launch during the 50’s-70’s, with the revamping of the Visual Arts Unit’s exhibitions program.

Cajamarca (1959 - 1959) by Fernando de SzyszloArt Museum of the Americas

Gómez Sicre considered the PAU as a “forum of free creation for new artists by providing the opportunity that often was out of their reach in their own environment.”

Composition (1960/1960) by María Luisa PachecoArt Museum of the Americas

Marpacífico (1943 - 1943) by Amelia PeláezArt Museum of the Americas

Cuban Artists Who José Gómez Sicre Promoted From the 1940's Onward

The third section features the work of his fellow Cuban artists, who he began working with as early as the 40s. Numbering more than 2,000 pieces, the collection is one the OAS’s most valuable assets.

Sonata de la Piedra y de la Carne (1967 - 1967) by Mario CarreñoArt Museum of the Americas

Figures in Yellow (1952 - 1952) by Rene PortocarreroArt Museum of the Americas

Untitled (1954/1954) by Mario CarreñoArt Museum of the Americas

Its worth lies in its uniqueness and history, its core composed of early works by young artists of the 1950s and 1970s who today are considered masters of the region.

Credits: Story

Organization of American States
Secretariat for Hemispheric Affairs
AMA | Art Museum of the Americas

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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