Freddie Mercado: Advocate of Performing Arts in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean

FM2Last month, Puerto Rican performance artist Freddie Mercado was hailed in the Dominican Republic for his performance “Expo Performance EFEMERIDES Las Caras de Freddie” as part of the most recent edition of the 27th Visual Arts Biennial of Santo Domingo. The performance was held at the Dominican School of Visual Arts in the colonial area of Santo Domingo. The Visual Arts Biennial exhibition will be open to the public until November 17, 2013, in the Museum of Art (located at Plaza de la Cultura Juan Pablo Duarte in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic). According to COA: Revista de Artes Plásticas de Puerto Rico y el Caribe [COA: Journal of Visual Arts of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean], Mercado’s work was meaningful in the framework of the Dominican Republic’s visual arts.

FM3Description: Freddie Mercado, born in Santurce, Puerto Rico, in 1967 is today one of the greatest advocates of the performing arts in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. With a trajectory of over ten years of experience, since his beginnings at the School of Visual Arts in San Juan, he has become a central figure in performance art in Puerto Rican visual arts.

His performance style places itself within a guerrilla-like expression on the island, where his acting defies historical notions of race and gender. His exploration includes the transformation of a variety of dramatic female characters, ranging from the simple, modest women of Puerto Rico, to extravagant characters from the Baroque period, who sometimes incorporate African-American characteristics. Mercado uses connotative signs to hyperbolize signifiers of concepts such as “feminine” and “Caribbean.”

These days, Mercado undoubtedly has become one of the most important avant-garde performance artists in Puerto Rico, presenting his performances not only in galleries, museums, and theaters in Puerto Rico but in other countries such as the Dominican Republic, Spain, and the United States.

For more information (and photos) see

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