Jack Délano: 100 Years

Although photography is the most well-known creative facet in the professional work of Jack Délano, his work also includes illustrations, musical scores and production designs for theater and cinema. For the first time, in a unique opportunity, these various works can be seen together as part of the Jack Délano exhibition: 100 years.

This is a retrospective that celebrates the centenary of the birth of the artist of Ukrainian nationality, but Puerto Rican by choice. The exhibition explores his artistic work with more than 200 works in various disciplines such as photography, illustration, music, dance, theater and cinema, showing that he is one of the most influential figures in the cultural scene of the island.

Jack Délano: 100 years emphasizes in the series entitled Contrasts, one hundred iconic photographs donated to the Museo de Arte de Ponce by the Smithsonian Institute, which embodies the social transformations of Puerto Rico between the forties and the eighties.

“This exhibition pays tribute to an artist for whom Puerto Rico was, all the time and in its many facets, his greatest inspiration. The light and colors of the landscape, the sound of its instruments, the diversity and kindness of its people were a fertile land of possibilities for its exploration and artistic production, ”said Arlette de la Serna, co-curator of the exhibition with Nelson Rivera.

Délano is one of the first references in the collective mind of our people when it comes to documentary photography. As evidence of his mastery behind the lens he left us the book Puerto Rico Mío, a collection of two photographic series in which he achieves a valuable historical record of Puerto Rican everyday life. However, its legacy is diversified into many other specialties that strengthen the inventory of this exhibition.

This exhibition is an opportunity to show the Museum’s commitment to preserve the artistic heritage of Puerto Rico, of which Délano’s work is part. For this occasion many of the artist’s works have been studied and preserved. With the photographs works the teacher, artist and curator Nitza Luna, while our curator of works on paper, Viviana van Vliet, has intervened a lot of drawings and illustrations.

Likewise, our Historical Archive has digitized materials such as the notebook with the sketches for the illustrations of the book The Emperor’s New Suit and the sketch for the book of Puerto Rico Mio. The scores present at the exhibition will also be digitized, such as the theme I’m going to Ponce.