Coffee Portfolio
Date 1954
Dimensions 14 1/8"x 17 1/4"
Category Print
Medium Linocut on paper
Genre Scenes
Period 20th Century
Collection Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico Collection

Rafael Tufiño

"Coffee Portfolio" (1954)


Printmaker, painter, illustrator, muralist and draftsman. Of Puerto Rican parents, he came to the island as a child, and began his art training with Alejandro Sánchez Felipe and Juan Rosado. He studied printmaking and mural technique at the San Carlos Academy in Mexico. He cofounded the Center for Puerto Rican Art in 1950 and painted his monumental work “La plena” (1952‑1954) which was exhibited for many years at the Fine Arts Center in Santurce and which now graces the walls of the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico. From 1952 to 1967 he worked at the Printmaking Workshop of the Community Education Division and then founded the Puerto Rican Workshop (“Taller Boricua”) in New York (1970‑1974). He was awarded numerous distinctions, such as the Guggenheim Fellowship (1954), with which he produced the portfolio entitled “El café” –the first one created by a single artist in Puerto Rico–, the National Culture Award of the Institute of Puerto Rican Culture (1987), and in 2013 the city named 103rd Street in Harlem in New York as the “Rafael Tufiño Way”. He was a tireless creator and one of the artists who truly represented the best Puerto Rican tradition of printmaking. Although he favored the figurative style, he also explored others such as abstraction, but always with particular attention to design and to achieve harmony among all the plastic elements in his work.