Carlos Alberto Estévez Carasa, Secret City (Ciudad Secreta), 2003.

Carlos Alberto Estévez Carasa, Secret City (Ciudad Secreta), 2003.

Cuba Avant-Garde: Contemporary Cuban Art from the Farber Collection

October 22, 2009 to January 10, 2010

This exhibition is an innovative collection of 58 artworks created over the past 30 years by 40 Cuban-born artists. Approximately half of these artists reside in Cuba, while the rest live in other countries across North America and Europe. Their work covers a broad range of media, including paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, sculptures, and installations. 

This exhibition examines a rich and varied history that few outside Cuba have had the opportunity to explore, highlighting the cultural mixing, aesthetic diversity, and critical voice that reflect the influence of international contemporary art, but more importantly, emerge from the distinct circumstances of Cuba itself.

Over the past three decades, the art of Cuba has had a remarkable impact on emerging global contemporary art. The First Havana Biennial of 1984 firmly established Cuba as a regional and world centre for contemporary art, and this exhibition dramatizes the extraordinary production and innovation of its artists since then. Drawing on a variety of experimental, conceptual, and postmodern strategies, Cubans have challenged accepted artistic and political discourse not only in their own society but in the international arena. In many ways, they have reversed conventional art-world notions of “centre” and “periphery” with their provocative, ironic, and critical approach.

The exhibition includes significant works by internationally renowned artists such as José Bedia, Antonio Fernandez, Los Carpinteros, Tania Bruguera, Carlos Garaicoa, Alexis Leyva, Luis Cruz Azaceta, Magdalena Campos Pons, and Elsa Mora.

Cuba Avant-Garde features rarely exhibited works, some never before seen outside Cuba. The works presented here were selected from the extensive collection of Howard and Patricia Farber of New York and Miami Beach.

Cuba Avant-Garde: Contemporary Cuban Art from the Farber Collection is originated by the Samuel P. Harn Museum at the University of Florida and is toured by Curatorial Assistance, Pasadena, California.

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