The Rancho Los Cerritos Foundation is pleased to welcome Carlos Ortega as the new curator of the Rancho Los Cerritos historic site. Ortega will be responsible for creating exhibitions and programs based on the Rancho’s collections and archives that make the history of Rancho Los Cerritos come alive. His passion for telling diverse stories that transcend the parameters of the traditional museum, and bring new levels of engagement and accessibility to modern audiences makes him an excellent addition to the Rancho Los Cerritos team.
Ortega is an award-winning exhibition designer whose exhibitions are known for involving the participation of the community, engaging diverse audiences and providing meaningful educational experiences. He has had more than two decades of curatorial museum experience working both in Europe and the United States. Most recently, Carlos was the Exhibitions Director at the Museum of Latin American Art (MOLAA) in Long Beach, CA. where his highly acclaimed exhibition, Transformations, attracted new audiences to the Museum and received a prestigious THEA (Themed Entertainment Association) Award.
“My goal, as the Curator at Rancho Los Cerritos is to improve the visitor experience, continue to engage with diverse communities in support of the Rancho’s DEIA policy*, collaborate with other institutions, and raise the profile of the Rancho through creative exhibitions and programs. Storytelling has always been an important element in all of my creative work and I am looking forward to bringing the many stories of Rancho Los Cerritos to life. ”
In addition to his work at Rancho Los Cerritos, Carlos continues his professional engagement in the museum field as a Board Member of the Western Museums Association. He received his M.A. from the University of Leicester in the United Kingdom and his B.A. from the University of the Basque Country in Spain.
Ortega will support Rancho Los Cerritos in making history accessible by presenting engaging exhibits, assisting researchers, and overseeing the California History Research Library and Archives. He will contribute to ongoing long-term projects including strategic planning, the Opening Doors campaign and the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) committee. Ortega will also be responsible for the reopening of the Visitor Center and the upcoming exhibit; Raices de Long Beach: Roots of the Rancho. This exhibit will focus on the Mexican and Mexican-American people who lived in the historic adobe home and connect their stories to the history of the development of Long Beach and the history of Mexican immigration to the United States. Raices de Long Beach: Roots of the Rancho is an exciting opportunity for Rancho Los Cerritos to tell more of its history and to share the stories of the Mexican and Mexican-American community of Long Beach.