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Gloria Rodríguez Calero Papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSS 116

Scope and Contents

This collection entitled the Gloria Rodríguez Calero papers is divided into four series. In addition to materials that document the artistic career and relationships of Gloria Rodríguez Calero (or “RoCa”) and her contemporaries, the collection contains newspaper clippings and media collected by RoCa that pertain to the career of her famous grandfather, Augusto Rodríguez, as well as information pamphlets and original works in multiple media formats gathered by Rodríguez Calero that reflect her passion and interest in Puerto Rican culture.

Rodríguez Calero’s long career as a visual artist and her relationship with her mentor, Lorenzo Homar, is documented under the series, “Correspondence”. Correspondence between Homar and Rodríguez Calero occupies a large part of the collection with letters, postcards, and objects sent primarily from Homar to Rodríguez that contain his musings regarding the art world, ideas, and various exhibitions, as well as his discussion of his trips throughout the world, his work, and personal events in his life. The earliest letters and notes from Homar in the collection begin in 1976 and continue up until 2002.

The “Personal” series encompasses a broader range of materials and subjects containing: photographs of RoCa’s friends and family from the 1920s up to the 1990s, family memorabilia such as diplomas and clothing from the 1920s to the 1970s, type-written essays covering political and cultural topics such as Puerto Rican independence, Puerto Rican cuisine, and Puerto Rican folklore from the 1950s and 1960s, and a small collection of fifteen to twenty vinyl records focused upon Puerto Rican music and performances by Augusto Rodríguez.

Another series “Press” comprises a substantial portion of the collection and it consists of newspaper clippings and articles in publications that discuss the life and performances of Augusto Rodríguez during his time as director of the Coro de La Universidad de Puerto Rico. While many of these materials specifically highlight performances of Augusto Rodríguez, there are also some articles and features highlighting Lorenzo Homar and even Rodríguez Calero, herself.

And finally, the series, “Artwork”, reflects Rodríguez Calero’s conversance with multiple artistic media and includes over twenty black and white photographs mounted on matboard as well as over twenty print copies of her work “Amanece.” In addition to her works, Rodríguez Calero also donated over thirty prints created by influential Nuyorican artists such as Jorge Soto, Marco Dimas, Rafael Tufiño, and others. These prints all date from the early 1970s up to the end of the 1980s and include prints from artists that Rodríguez Calero worked alongside during her residency at the historic Taller Boricua.


  • Creation: 1920-2006


Conditions Governing Access

The Collection is open to researchers.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by Gloria Rodríguez Calero.

Biographical / Historical

Gloria Rodríguez Calero (also known as “RoCa”) is a Nuyorican visual artist, painter, collagist, and photographer.

Born in Puerto Rico and raised primarily in New York City, RoCa received her artistic education from various esteemed art institutions including the Escuela de Artes Plásticas in San Juan as well as the Art Students League of New York. In the course of her studies, RoCa learned from many notable Puerto Rican artists, especially the master printmaker and painter, Lorenzo Homar, who acted as her mentor and who she credits as being a main influence on her work ethnic and her signature style of painting. One distinct feature of RoCa’s work is the use of an original technique she calls “acrollage” where various types of paper and colorful glazes are layered on the canvas blending in with prints to create vibrant and striking compositions.

Throughout her career, RoCa has received many awards, honors, and fellowships in recognition of her work from groups such as the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Notably, early in her career, she held a National Endowment for the Arts residency at the historic Taller Boricua where she worked alongside other influential Nuyorican artists.

Acclaimed for her artistic output in painting and photography, RoCa was named Honorary Artist of the Year by The New York Institute of Puerto Rico, received the Brooklyn Arts and Culture Association Painting Award from the Brooklyn Museum, and more recently received recognition from the Photographer’s Forum Magazine as well as a grant from the prestigious Joan Mitchell Foundation for her painting. Her work has been exhibited around the world from museums such as El Museo del Barrio in the USA to galleries in Caribbean Islands and China.


“Gloria Rodriguez Calero.” Center for Latino Arts and Culture - Rutgers. Accessed 5 September 2022. “Bio.” Rodríguez Calero. Accessed 5 September 2022. “RODRIGUEZ CALERO: Urban Martyrs and Latter Day Santos” El Museo. Accessed 5 September 2022.


4.5 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials


Spanish; Castilian

Metadata Rights Declarations

  • License: This record is made available under an Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International Creative Commons license.


Visual artist. Rodriguez Calero was born in Puerto Rico and raised in New York, and for 20 years worked and resided in New Jersey. Her career and services are active in El Barrio and the Lower East Side Communities. Collection includes correspondence from her mentor and fellow artist Lorenzo Homar, a number of books, exhibition catalogues and other ephemera. Included as well are a significant number of Puerto Rican silkscreen posters, clippings, maps and documents pertaining to her artistic career.

Processing Information

Gloria Rodríguez Calero donated materials for her own collection as well as materials which ended up being placed in a separate collection specifically for her grandfather, Augusto Rodríguez. During processing of her collection, some materials were migrated from her collection to that of Augusto Rodríguez including an honorary doctorate awarded to Augusto Rodríguez from la Universidad de Puerto Rico in 1984, six VHS tapes of performances by Augusto and a recording of his memorial service in 1993, one reel-to-reel recording of an orchestral performance directed by Rodríguez in 1972, and three cassette tapes of music.

Additionally, the materials donated by Gloria Rodriguez Calero included books and art catalogs featuring Puerto Rican art, culture, and literature. These materials were separated from the rest of her collection and integrated into CENTRO’s library holdings.

Gloria Rodríguez Calero Papers
Brendan Enright
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Archives of the Puerto Rican Diaspora Repository

Silberman Building, Hunter College
2180 Third Ave. Rm. 122
New York New York 10065

About the Collections

Our collections consist of personal papers from prominent Puerto Rican artists, elected officials, social activists, writers, as well as the records of community-based organizations. Our largest collection, the Offices of the Government of Puerto Rico in the United States (OGPRUS) Records, measures approximately 2,900 cubic feet and contains an extraordinary amount of information regarding Puerto Rican migrants and the government institutions established to assist them. The collections date from the 1890s to the present, and document Puerto Rican communities in the Northeast, Midwest, Florida, California and Hawaii.