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Albuquerque Museum Receives Prestigious Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts

Grant to support upcoming exhibition, Broken Boxes: A Decade of Art, Action, and Dialog.
January 25, 2024

The Albuquerque Museum Foundation, on behalf of the Albuquerque Museum, has received a $30,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), an independent federal agency that is the largest funder of the arts and arts education in communities nationwide and a catalyst of public and private support for the arts. This grant will support the Museum’s upcoming exhibition, Broken Boxes: A Decade of Art, Action, and Dialog, and help commemorate the tenth anniversary of the Broken Box podcast, which is dedicated to the transmission of ideas among working artists. The grant will also provide support honorariums for artists, performances, and audio/visual needs.

Broken Boxes: A Decade of Art, Action, and Dialog, co-curated by Ginger Dunnill, Broken Boxes Podcast Founder, and Dr. Josie Lopez, Head Curator at the Albuquerque Museum, will open at the Albuquerque Museum on September 7, 2024, and run through March 2, 2025. The exhibition will include large-scale installation works, a video exhibition room, an interactive education room, and public engagement programs including artists performing music and in conversation. A book published by the University of New Mexico Press will expand upon the exhibition and podcast by using podcast conversation points to celebrate the artists' works and lives in their own words, while providing reflections and responses on their peers' practices, further transmitting ideas between artists.

The exhibition will feature 23 artists and include programming for Third Thursday events along with opening and closing events.

“For over a decade, Ginger Dunnill’s Broken Boxes Podcast has amplified the voices of contemporary artists at the forefront of global and local community engagement. Participating artists have also forged friendships through collaboration, activism, and dialog with each other,” said Dr. Josie Lopez, Albuquerque Museum Head Curator. “This exhibition celebrates a project that brings together these artists who share their respective artistic practices while activating new ways of building the future.”

Lopez continues, “Working closely with Ginger Dunnill to curate both the exhibition and an exciting slate of programs demonstrates how ambitious museum exhibitions can reflect on activism across cultures, place, and time, and also present exciting new approaches to making art.”

This exhibition is a celebration of ten years of the Broken Boxes Podcast, a social engagement project that was created in 2014 in Santa Fe, New Mexico, by Ginger Dunnill, a multidisciplinary artist. Promoting safe space, healing, and solidarity, Dunnill strives to honor the intersections where stories overlap, refusing to “box us out of each other’s narratives.” The format allows for human connection between artists, while exploring each artist’s identity.

The podcast explores the ideas and artwork that challenge the rules, traditions, and imposed narratives that limit our society. Highlighting BIPOC, LGBTQ+, and Activism-based visual artists as well as musicians, advocates, performance artists, and art collectives, the podcast gives insight into the motivations behind each artist’s work and how it affects change. The long-format conversations offer personal stories into each artist’s process in creating his/her/their artwork and how culture plays a role. Interviews are done on location, as well as virtually. Dunnill travels throughout the state to meet working Indigenous artists whose stories need to be shared in the global conversation about contemporary art.

The longevity of the Broken Boxes podcast is substantial, and Dunnill’s work as an artist will be recognized, and utilized, in creating this new exhibition. Dunnill and Lopez’s collaborative curatorial concept will bring works by the artists together in dialogue with each other and with the artist’s words from the podcasts.

“This prestigious grant will make a big difference for the Albuquerque Museum’s 2024-2025 season by extending the outreach for Broken Boxes: A Decade of Art, Action, and Dialog,” said Andrew Rodgers, President and CEO of Albuquerque Museum Foundation. “This exhibit will enrich our community and encourage attendees to ‘think outside the box’ while also encouraging an important dialogue.”

“The Albuquerque Museum is a cultural cornerstone in our community, highlighting our history, identity, and artistic expression,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “Recognition from the NEA underscores the museum's commitment to preserving our heritage for generations to come.” The Museum last received a grant from the NEA in 2005. It has also received a grant from the Andy Warhol Foundation in support of this exhibition.

List of participating artists in the exhibition: (in chronological order of interview on podcast)

1. Saya Woolfalk

2. Raven Chacon

3. Sterlin Harjo

4. Amaryllis R. Flowers

5. Tsedaye Makonnen

6. Natalie Ball

7. Autumn Chacon

8. Cassils

9. Laura Ortman

10. India Sky

11. Elisa Harkins

12. Guadalupe Maravilla

13. Swoon

14. Christine Howard Sandoval

15. Kate DiCissio

16. Tanya Aguiñiga

17. Joseph M. Pierce

18. Mario Ybarra Jr.

19. Chip Thomas

20. Jeremy Dennis

21. Marie Watt

22. Katherine Paul (Black Belt Eagle Scout)

23. Cannupa Hanska Luger