I’m still undecided on the work of Tania Bruguera, but this is a very clear, straightforward assessment by her:
“Every country has certain censorship and self-censorship,” Tania says. “In capitalist places, it has to do with the economy. As an artist, if you don’t do something that is liked, the corporations won’t buy the work or the collector won’t collect it. In Cuba, it is strictly political, in the sense that there is a responsibility for the artist, who has been raised and educated for free, to not touch some subjects.”
(An old story, on the 1997 Havana Biennial, in the Brooklyn Rail)
“It was interesting to observe how in Cuba, a country isolated largely by the U.S. embargo, people have no access to foreign publications, and their international exposure is very limited. However, Cuban artists are quite well informed. They have a long tradition of sharing the information they do have, and of distributing among themselves books and magazines that become community objects. ”
- Gabriel Orozco on visiting the Havana Biennial.
Within a broad conversation printed in Art In America — between Orozco and fellow Mexican conceptual artist Damián Ortega — there are interesting tidbits on the differences between the Cuban and Mexican art contexts. Check it out here.
french creative JR has traveled to havana, cuba in order develop his latest installment of the series ‘the wrinkles of the city’. in this particular project,the french creative has collaborated with brooklyn-based artist josé parlá to conceive of and put in place this expansive public art project. JR is currently photographing the city’s elderly inhabitants, then creating gigantic prints from the sitter’s likeliness. these massive images are then wheat-pasted onto the facades of havana’s building exteriors and decorated with the swirling paint strokes of parlá. the two artists have introduced to the bustling city a selection of pictured individuals from the area upon a wide selection of surfaces, then complimented by swirling calligraphic markings. the artists’ choice to plaster the likeliness of elderly inhabitants upon imperfect surfaces, with the addition of swirling and free-flowing lines, further enhance the depth and tactile quality of each image. the wrinkles and time-enabled imperfections of each individual pictured are complimented in this simultaneous appreciation of the city’s architecture— in the end, the aged faces and of the people upon the walls tell the tale of the life that exists within each structure. like each of the ‘wrinkles of the city’ installations, this particular project is apolitical, allowing space for public interpretation as JR and parlá present the aged community within havana, enabling an encounter between the subject and observer, grounding the passerby in the humanity of the region.this segment of the ongoing series has been installed for the tropical city’s 11th oncena bienal de la habana, cuba which takes place between may 11th and june 11th, 2012.
Culinary diplomacy at the Havana Art Biennial: ten Cuban chefs and ten New York chefs (including Sara Jenkins of Porchetta and Porsena) just concluded ten days of seating anyone who walked in the door of the restaurant-ish space they opened in the back patio of an Old Havana art space. Proyecto Paladar, as it was called, fed foreigners and locals alike ethnic food not usually often found in Cuba at tables of 12— the amount of people allowed to eat at the in-home restaurants when they were first legalized almost two decades ago. Wanderlust is on high today.
Accent theme by Handsome Code