Three Exhibitions Highlighting Cuban Art to Open 10/16 at Miami's Frost Art Museum
Among the artists included in the Eternal Cuba exhibition are Miguel Melero, Leopoldo Romañach, Augusto García Menocal, Antonio Rodriguez Morey, Eduardo Abela, Mirta Cerra, Manuel Mesa, Víctor Manuel García, Carlos Enríquez, René Portocarrero, Carlos Alfonzo and José Bedia.
Jorge Pérez posed the question: "What better way to tell the story of a nation than through its art?" He went on to say that, "This is precisely why Darlene and I felt so strongly about donating these paintings by Cuban artists to Florida International University's Frost Art Museum and its School of International and Public Affairs for its Cuban Research Institute. The intent of our donation was to reinforce FIU's commitment to the interdisciplinary study of Cuba, which is so relevant, given the strong cultural ties many in South Florida have with the island."
From Africa to the Americas
José Bedia, Buena Intención, 2001, Drawing on paper, 38 x 50 inches, Gift of Ruth Shack in memory of Richard Shack, FIU 2013.2The rich symbolic legacy of the syncretism and rituals born of traditional African religion and Catholicism in Cuba and the Caribbean is but one reflection of the many complex identities that result with the intermingling of people over many years, and the particular circumstances of their relationships - whether by choice or forced imposition. From Africa to the Americas proposes to introduce the visual legacy of Africa to Cuba through a small, but key, selection of works of art and ethnographic objects. Included are works by José Bedia, Carlos Alfonso and Wifredo Lam, among others.
Frost Art Museum Director and Chief Curator Carol Damian explains that, "From the sixteenth through the nineteenth centuries, close to one million people from West and Central Africa were enslaved and transported to the Caribbean to work on plantations. In Cuba, the Yoruba were the principle ethnic group that had a major cultural impact, and the influence of their Orisha religion attracted many followers and artists. Their beliefs survived in an often hostile society through the association of Orisha deities with Catholic saints, creating the syncretic religion, Santería. Other syncretic practices also emerged on the island, including Palo Monte (Regla de Palo or Regla de Mayombé), and artists as initiates and practitioners revealed ritual symbolism as spiritual indicators, and as offerings to the gods. Spiritual belief and religious practice are at the core of this exhibition of African and Afro-Cuban works, which runs throughJanuary 5, 2014. Each one references the transformations from Africa to the Americas, and the journeys of a people and the astonishment of the spirit."
Also currently on display at the Frost Art Museum:
Deep Blue by Javier Velasco
Alberto Baraya's Naturalism/Artificiality: Expeditions, and Research of the Herbarium of Artificial Plants
A Wolfsonian-FIU Teaching Exhibition Crisis and Commerce: World's Fairs of the 1930s
Artwork: Humberto Castro, Deconstruction, Reconstruction (and detail), 2013, Installation with earth, ceramic shards, videos and Taíno artifacts from the Alfredo Carrada Collection, Dimensions variable.
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