Alicia Grullon: March to June: At Home with Essential Workers

The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately affected and devastated communities of color throughout the United States. Comprised primarily of Black and Brown communities, the Bronx has the highest rates of coronavirus cases, hospitalizations and deaths in New York’s five boroughs. Many of New York City’s essential workers who keep public transportation moving, shelves stocked, and provide healthcare live in neighborhoods most affected by COVID-19. Alicia Grullón’s new series of photographs, March to June: At Home with Essential Workers, continues her exploration of the self-portrait as a participatory process. Through her work, she documents her experience as a woman of color as well as a member of a community at the epicenter of the pandemic.

“These self-portraits were created in my home in New York City during the Covid-19 quarantine, from March to June 2020,” explains Grullón. “In this body of work, I simultaneously document my time at home and current affairs affecting the nation during quarantine. As performances, they are sites of mapping, engaging in participatory approaches of record keeping with my body.” The titles of each work refer to the date the photographs were taken as well as news articles about the treatment of essential workers and incarcerated people during the pandemic. Grullón continues to add to the series, but the selection of photographs on view here concludes with an image taken on the day of protests in the Bronx against police violence, following the murder of George Floyd.

An Afro-Taino Caribbean descendant on Lenne-Lenape land, Grullón has been featured in a number of group exhibitions including The 8th Floor; The Bronx Museum of the Arts; BRIC House for Arts and Media; School of Visual Arts; El Museo del Barrio; Columbia University; Socrates Sculpture Park; Performa 11; and Old Stone House and Art in Odd Places. She has received grants from the Puffin Foundation; Bronx Council on the Arts; the Department of Cultural Affairs of the City of New York; and Franklin Furnace Archives. Grullón has participated in residencies at the Hemispheric Institute for Politics and Performance at New York University; the Center for Book Arts; the Bronx Museum of Arts Block Gallery; AIM Alum; and the Shandanken Project on Governors island. She has presented at the 2017 Whitney Biennial with Occupy Museums; Creative Time Summit 2015; The Royal College of Art; and the United States Association for Art Educators. Her work has been reviewed in many prominent journals, including Hyperallergic, ArtNet News, and Women & Performance: A Journal of Feminist Theory. Grullón is a recipient of BRIC’s inaugural Colene Brown Art Prize for 2019.

For Educators

Download a curriculum by Grullón exploring the self-portrait here

Jul 23 - Nov 23, 2020
    • "March 31, 2020: Rikers Island Prisoners Are Being Offered PPE and $6 an Hour to Dig Mass Graves-", 2020. Archival Digital Print.
    • "April 13, 2020: NYC death toll jumps by 3,700 after uncounted fatalities are added-", 2020. Archival Digital Print.
    • "April 28, 2020: As Amazon, Walmart, and Others Profit Amid Coronavirus Crisis, Their Essential Workers Plan Unprecedented Strike-", 2020. Archival Digital Print.
    • "May 4, 2020: We call workers 'essential'--but is that just referring to the work, not the people?-", 2020. Archival Digital Print.
    • "May 8, 2020: US Postal Service warns coronavirus pandemic threatens its survival-", 2020. Archival Digital Print.
    • "May 30, 2020: As 'Hero' Pay Ends, Essential Workers Wonder What They Are Worth-", 2020. Archival Digital Print.
    • "June 4, 2020: NYPD's Ambush of Peaceful Bronx Protesters Was 'Executed Nearly Flawlessly,' City Leaders," 2020. Archive Digital Print.
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