The Puerto Rican Flag hung vertically. The central star is missing, and the blue triangle has been fragmented. The red stripes have been looped and curled upwards, mimicking blood dribbling down.

“¡Que Bonita Bandera!” (2022)
For decades, it was illegal to display the Puerto Rican flag as US colonial forces saw “la bandera” as a sign of dangerous nationalism and a pro-independence movement (which was actively suppressed by the FBI’s COINTELPRO). Today, millions of Puerto Ricans on and off the island proudly display the flag. Here, the artist inscribes Puerto Rico’s history onto its flag: the blood of the millions of Taíno indigenous people slaughtered and millions of Black people cruelly enslaved, the fractured allegiances and artificial divisions among the Puerto Rican people after centuries of Spanish and US colonialism and political corruption, the promise of freedom and self-determination that is still to this day absent from the lives of Puerto Ricans. But hey, que bonita bandera, ¿no?

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