El Chandelier

  • Pepón Osorio, El Chandelier, 1988, functional metal and glass chandelier with plastic toys and figurines, glass crystals, and other objects, Smithsonian American Art Museum, © 1988, Pepón Osorio, Museum purchase through the Smithsonian Latino Initiatives Pool and the Smithsonian Institution Collections Acquisition Program, 1995.40

Exhibition Label

 

 

When Osorio worked as a social worker in New York City he often saw elaborate chandeliers hanging in humble apartment homes. This experience led him to appreciate the meaning behind buying tchotchkes and expensive-looking objects. The plastic palm trees, coquis (iconic Puerto Rican frogs), dominos, and tassels that adorn his light source suggest coping mechanisms in the face of adversity and migration. Sculptures of Catholic saints and variously complexioned dolls reference Afro-Caribbean spiritual systems and racial hierarchies. Spanish and English mingle in the work’s title, conjuring a space between cultures and realities.

Our America: The Latino Presence in American Art, 2013

 

 

Title
El Chandelier
Artist
Date
1988
On View
Not on view.
Dimensions
60 7/8 x 42 in. (154.6 x 106.7 cm) diam.
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Museum purchase through the Smithsonian Latino Initiatives Pool and the Smithsonian Institution Collections Acquisition Program

Mediums
Mediums Description
functional metal and glass chandelier with plastic toys and figurines, glass crystals, and other objects
Classifications
Highlights
Keywords
  • Object – toy – doll
  • Object – furniture – lamp
Object Number
1995.40
Palette
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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