Block title

Work Samples

Campamento

Campamento
Campamento, acrylic on paper, ash, shock cord. 10' 6" x 8' 6" (2018)

Fragmento

Fragmento
Mixed media. 17” x 10 ⅛” x 2 ½” (2020)

Nube

Nube
fir, maple. 42” x 36” x 29” (2018)

Toldos

Toldos
Toldos, sandpaper, watercolor, pencil. 14" x 11" (2018)

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About Eric

Baltimore City

Eric Rivera Barbeito's picture
Eric Rivera Barbeito was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico and received his BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2017. Rivera Barbeito integrates a multimedia approach to his practice that draws from  a diverse field of  processes to give visual representation to concepts relevant to the present condition between Puerto Rico and the United States.  Rivera Barbeito currently lives and works in Baltimore, was an Artist-in-Residence at the Vermont Studio Center and has been... more

Campamento

Campamento delves into the commodification of Puerto Rico’s tropical spaces: the painting consists of 78 acrylic on paper squares that act as a stand-ins for each of Puerto Rico's municipalities, highlighting the susceptibility of these spaces to be treated as goods.

It portrays an already occurring liquidation of Puerto Rican land to private interests in light of the island's economic struggles exacerbated by the passing of Hurricane María. Facing tightening austerity measures, a massive on-going exodus of Puerto Ricans leaving the island, and precipitating property values, the island's territory is wide open for acquisition by an affluent class itching to make Puerto Rico its own private resort.

Gracias + Reconstrucción

Gracias (2017), a site-specific structure that resembles a small shed, makes use of standard tropical architectural imagery and an attached air conditioning unit to portray ineffective design. Its walls, made to mimic concrete ornamental blocks commonly found in the Caribbean fail to contain the cooled air that the unit provides. The air conditioning unit, in turn, derives its power from a larger structure that dwarfs Gracias, and reiterates the persistent colonial relationship between Puerto Rico and the United States.

Defying the reeling economic crisis and more recent setbacks brought by Hurricane María, many Puerto Ricans are leading incredible efforts in reinventing and redefining standard systems of operation in the island. Reconstrucción (2018) takes a cue from these efforts, repurposing pieces from Gracias, to focus on how Puerto Rico can and will rebuild itself out of the remains of what María destroyed, led not by governments but by the ambitious and passionate individuals who want a better future for their home

  • Gracias

    Gracias
    plywood, pine, poplar, paint, metal roofing, a/c unit, extension cord. 5’ x 5’ x 7’ (2017)
  • Gracias (Detail)

    Gracias (Detail)
    plywood, pine, poplar, paint, metal roofing, a/c unit, extension cord. 5’ x 5’ x 7’ (2017)
  • Gracias (Detail)

    Gracias (Detail)
    plywood, pine, poplar, paint, metal roofing, a/c unit, extension cord. 5’ x 5’ x 7’ (2017)
  • Reconstrucción

    Reconstrucción
    plywood, maple, paint. 6’ 3" x 2’ 9" x 5’ 4" (2018)
  • Reconstrucción (Detail)

    Reconstrucción (Detail)
    plywood, maple, paint. 6’ 3" x 2’ 9" x 5’ 4" (2018)
  • Reconstrucción (Detail)

    Reconstrucción (Detail)
    plywood, maple, paint. 6’ 3" x 2’ 9" x 5’ 4" (2018)

Selected Sculptural Work

  • Nube

    Nube
    fir, maple. 42” x 36” x 29, (2018) Nube is a visual condensation of natural cataclysms. It remarks on the devastation left in Puerto Rico by the passing of Hurricane María, and considers the increasing severity of these “acts of god” as the result of human-driven climate change.
  • Vieques

    Vieques
    fir, walnut, pine, acrylic, paper. 34" x 6.5" x 6.5" (2018) Vieques is a representation of the compounded damage of the US Navy’s occupation of the Puerto Rican island municipality the work is named after. After 60 years of utilizing large swaths of the island for regular bomb testing, the island's population faces lingering detrimental health effects even after the Navy's departure in 2003.
  • Fence (Green Zone)

    Fence
    painted plywood, flocked paper, MDF. 5" x 13.5" 10" (2018) Fence is a play on the many connotations the word has within United States politics. Initially a derisive comment on the pro-statehood campaigns in Puerto Rico, it took on new meaning after reading Naomi Klein’s The Shock Doctrine a year later. It remarks on the citadel established in Baghdad by the United States armed forces, and the lucrative private contracts that fulfill all the basic services expected of a regular municipality.
  • Oficial

    Oficial
    paper clips. 8.25" x 3.5" (2018)
  • Screen

    Screen
    plywood, maple. 5' x 5' x 3" (2017)
  • Bound

    Bound
    red oak, poplar, plywood, latex, screws. 6’ x 2’ x 5” (2017)
  • Grama

    Grama
    laminated plywood, flocked paper. 11" x 8" x 4" (2017)
  • Arco Parcha

    Arco Parcha
    laminated plywood, acrylic. 18” x 30” x 5” (2017)

Jardín

Jardín is a collection of wall-mounted pieces and small-scale paintings.

  • Fragmento

    Fragmento
    2020 Mixed media 17” x 10 ⅛” x 2 ½”
  • Ahora

    Ahora
    2020 HDPE, ash, plywood, acrylic paint and graphite on paper 16 3/8” x 10 5/16” x 1 1/4”
  • Caracól

    Caracól
    2020 polymer clay, acrylic 6 3/8” x 5 5/16” x 1”

Temporal

On September 20th, 2017, Hurricane María ripped through the island of Puerto Rico. This series of objects attempts to record and represent the new-normals that shape a post-María landscape.

  • Nube

    Nube
    Nube, acrylic, steel, paint. 12” x 8” x 3” (2019)
  • Después

    Después
    ash, maple, masonite, tarp. 6.5” x 5.25” x 5.25” (2017)
  • Casa

    Casa
    plywood, milk paint. 4.875” x 4.25” x 7” (2018)
  • Inundación

    Inundación
    chestnut, plexiglas, acrylic paint. 4.75” x 10” x 5.25” (2017)
  • Objeto de Lujo

    Objeto de Lujo
    pine, plastic, acrylic paint. 8.5” x 7.875” x 4.375” (2017)
  • Over

    Over
    maple, acrylic paint. 23.25”x 3.875”x .875” (2017)
  • Puerta

    Puerta
    plywood, PLA, ash. 14.125” x 9.75” x 10.25” (2018)
  • Renacimiento

    Renacimiento
    PLA, ash, maple. 32” x 3.25” x 3.25” (2017)
  • Roto

    Roto
    ebonized chestnut. 3.625” x 4.5” x 3.625” (2018)
  • Vagón

    Vagón
    painted plywood. 4” x 3.5” x 18.5” (2018)

Diagramas

Given the extensive and constantly shifting dynamics of Puerto Rico's current status, maintaining a clear understanding of the ongoing political, economic, and social issues in the island is often a task that requires investigative knowledge into the circumstance and entities that have played a major role in Puerto Rico's unraveling. These drawings belong to a series of exercises in the synthesis of information, both personal and public, aimed at conveying complex systems of operation in and relating to the island through an often simplistic diagrammatic approach. Through them, concepts of futility, resource allocation and wastefulness, and inescapable cycles allude to Puerto Rico's long history as a territory under someone else's rule.

  • Vista Pública

    Vista Pública
    acrylic, pencil, charcoal on paper. 11.75 x 9 inches (2019)
  • Mapa

    Mapa
    watercolor, pencil, acrylic. 14" x 11" (2018)
  • Toldos

    Toldos
    Toldos, sandpaper, watercolor, pencil. 14" x 11" (2018)
  • Diagrama

    Diagrama
    watercolor, pencil, acrylic, marker. 14" x 11" (2018)
  • Charco

    Charco
    watercolor, pencil, acrylic. 14" x 11" (2018)
  • Jaula

    Jaula
    flocked paper, watercolor, pencil, acrylic. 14" x 11" (2018)
  • Lija

    Lija
    sandpaper, pencil, acrylic. 14" x 11" (2018)
  • Nube (Vieques)

    Nube (Vieques)
    pencil. 14" x 11" (2018)

Connect with Eric

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Eric's Curated Collection

This artist has not yet created a curated collection.