Cutting Edge: BMFA educates the community through art - Brownsville Herald: Local News

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Cutting Edge: BMFA educates the community through art

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Posted: Thursday, September 19, 2019 9:30 pm

What started in 1935 as a group of eight women meeting to discuss their passion for art has now become a “cutting-edge” museum that strives to contribute to the art education for the community of Brownsville and surrounding areas.

The Brownsville Museum of Fine Art officially opened its doors to the public in the late 1960s under the name of “Brownsville Art League.” It wasn’t until 2002 that they officially changed the name to what we know today as the Brownsville Museum of Fine Art.

The museum has learned to adapt to the never-ending evolution of the arts by hosting free classic music concerts; film premiers; painting, drawing and music classes; and the opening of their new exhibits, including a digital painting one, with free wine and cheese for the community.

“This museum is on the cutting edge because, actually, digital painting is still unconventional, but it’s becoming more accepted in art shows and even in museums,” said Carole K. Boyd, artist for the “Diversity” exhibit that opened Wednesday at the museum. “People that are not professional artists, but that are just admirers, are curious about what digital is … I think it’s a real asset to the community to educate, and this museum educates the community in many levels. But to educate in digital terms and what digital art is, it’s a great asset to the community.”

Deyanira Ramirez, interim director at BMFA, said the museum has a lot of different things to offer to the community and that they keep exploring art to bring to Brownsville.

“Visit us. We have a lot of new and different things at the museum,” Ramirez said. “We are exploring, we are bringing contemporary art, something different that has not been seen a lot before in this city.”

Ramirez added that she encourages artists to keep fighting for their dreams so hopefully one day they can have their own exhibit at the museum of fine art.

“Don’t desist. There are some artists that see their goal very far away and sometimes it’s very close,” she said. “Having your first exhibit is a dream come true, and I would like for the new generations of artists, who are now in school, to one day have their own exhibit — and why not? To have them knock on our door so we can give them the opportunity.”

Alejandro Macias, board member and current artist of one of the exhibits at the museum, said his collaborative exhibit, “Texas, We’re Listening,” which was created with artists Cody Arnall and Joe Harjo, all three of them university professors, addresses issues that revolve around environment, identity and the socio-political climate.

“Cody Arnall originated the exhibition idea when we were all resident artists at Vermont Studio Center during July 2019,” Macias said. “I took the idea to heart and proposed the exhibition to the Brownsville Museum of Fine Art because I felt it was important that contemporary artists with a social practice continue to contribute to the art community within Brownsville and Texas as a whole. It’s fair to say that Brownsville trails behind the booming art communities and market within Houston and Dallas, so, I believe Brownsville has a responsibility to remain in the conversation.”

Macias added that resources for young talent within Brownsville can be limited, so taking trips to a museum and galleries in bigger cities may not be possible, making it important to bring art to them.

“Sometimes, bringing the art to them may be the most ideal situation, and I am happy to contribute to that in any way possible,” he said.

To see dates for the exhibits, visit “Brownsville Museum of Fine Art” on Facebook or call the museum at (956) 542-0941.

nreyna@brownsvilleherald.com

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