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“Archives of Consciousness,” six Cuban artists at U.S. Fairfield University

The art museum of Fairfield University, in Connecticut, will exhibit for the primary time in its nine years the work of Cuban plastic artists.

Creators dissimilar to one another like Roberto Diago, Manuel Mendive, Eduardo Roca (“Choco”), Abel Barroso, Mabel Poblet, and Luis Enrique Camejo, meet within the show to start (and proceed) the conversation about what many call “Cuban exceptionality.”

“The Duck,” 2019, by Eduardo Roca Salazar, “Choco.” Image courtesy Fairfield University.

Within the words of presentation, the organizers indicate that this exhibition is an invite to witness the struggles and experiences of life within the revolutionary society of Cuba. Together, they illuminate the numerous ways during which artists are on the forefront of the controversy, challenge and criticism of a communist state that has survived six a long time of U.S. hostility, partly through the regulation of private freedom and the prohibition of dissent.

The exhibition insists on stating the context during which relations between Cuba and the USA are currently going through from an unprecedented opening to some extent of crisis and radicalization. That’s when the exhibition “talks” in regards to the ways during which power systems exert control over individuals and their efforts to achieve understanding.

“The Truck,” 2006, by Luis Camejo Vento. Image courtesy Fairfield University.

The words of presentation indicate that through images that converge usually and sometimes come into conflict, the six participating artists query the boundaries of liberation reached up to now, not only in Cuba, but in all modern societies, including that of the USA, and that their works query how gender, racial, sexual, religious, business, technological and even business mythologies inhabit our identities and influence our destinies.

“Derailed,” 2015, by Mabel Poblet Pujol. Image courtesy Fairfield University.

Carey Mack Weber, executive director of the Fairfield University art museum, told OnCuba that the preparation of the show also allowed for close work between the departments of History, the Spanish language and Latin American studies.

“We were lucky to fulfill Steve Certilman, from whose vast collection of Cuban art we took the 52 pieces that make up this exhibition,” Weber said.

Starting then, curators Dr. Lillian Guerra and Dr. Arianne Kolb decided to give attention to the six essential artists that made up the Certilman collection.

“Lounge Chair,” 2015, by Abel Barroso Arencibia. Image courtesy Fairfield University.

Titled “Archives of Consciousness,” the bilingual exhibition insists on the questioning ability of Cuban art, not only about its reality, but about universal feelings equivalent to disappointment, pain, beauty, healing, protest and resilience of that “collective consciousness” of this group of works.

Different styles and techniques of the participating artists allow us to reflect on the multiple contradictions of the human being, and the force involved in facing those internal contradictions.

“Study No. 3 for the Mountains,” 2007, by Juan Roberto Diago Durruthy. Image courtesy Fairfield University.

The exhibition will begin on the Walsh Gallery of the museum (on the Quick Center for the Arts) on the night of January 23, with a lecture by Dr. Lillian Guerra, followed by a reception with Cuban music by Ariacne Trujillo Durand.

It’ll be open with free admission to the general public until May 15, 2020.

OnCuba Staff, OnCuba editorial staff

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