Xuxa Rodríguez (she/her/hers) is Assistant Curator, Contemporary Art at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. A critical race and intersectional feminist art historian, Rodríguez is responsible for modern and contemporary American art in the museum’s collection spanning the areas of Latinx and Latin American art, African diasporic art, feminist and queer art, time-based media, and transnational artists. She holds a PhD in art history from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her dissertation, “Performing Exile: Cuban-American Women’s Performance Art, 1972–2014,” is the first to examine Ana Mendieta, Carmelita Tropicana, María Magdalena Campos-Pons, and Coco Fusco together, arguing their work embodies U.S.-Cuba diplomatic relations of the late 20th century and reflecting on the effects of exile as seen in Tania Bruguera’s work in relationship to President Barack Obama’s 2014 announcement to normalize relations between the two nations.
Rodríguez’s research and scholarship has been supported by the Luce / American Council of Learned Societies Dissertation Fellowship in American Art, the Smithsonian Institution’s Fellowship Program, the U.S. Department of Education’s Foreign Language and Area Studies Program, and the Graduate College at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. An alumni of the Center for Curatorial Leadership / Mellon Foundation Seminar and the Smithsonian Latino Center’s Museum Studies Program, she has held fellowships and positions at Figure One Exhibition Lab Space, Frost Art Museum, Krannert Art Museum, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and Spurlock Museum.