Dilated Biography: Contemporary Cuban Narratives

Dilated Biography: Contemporary Cuban Narratives

School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University

(L) Alexandre Arrechea, White Corner (still), 2006. Two video projections on two walls; (R) Felipe Dulzaides, Arriba de la Bola/On the Ball (still), 2000. Single channel video.
September 20, 2013
Dilated Biography: Contemporary Cuban Narratives

Through October 19, 2013

School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
230 The Fenway, Boston
Hours: Monday–Saturday, 10 am–5 pm; Thursday 10 am–8 pm; closed Sundays and holidays


Through October 19, the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (SMFA), hosts Dilated Biography: Contemporary Cuban Narratives, an exhibition guest curated by Jorge Antonio Fernández Torres. Inspired by Cuban poet and artist Severo Sarduy, whose novel “Gestos” explores the idea that biography usually happens before birth and then expands (or dilates), Fernández Torres brings together a diverse group of 15 artists to examine the culture, politics, and history of their native country through the lens of their personal experiences.

Cuba has historically been a place of crossroads; a great integration of cultures. Throughout its rich history, Cuba’s anthropological, political, social, and ontological ideas have struggled to maintain a balance within its borders and its people have searched for ways to understand and make connections between these distinct identities. The July 1953 Cuban Revolution polarized its people, but it continues to fuel new ideas about cultural identification, family, and the evolving biography of this complex nation.

Rather than a defined theme in the exhibition, Fernández Torres has chosen to focus on the coexistence of different memories. “Do not bet on seeing one style, medium, material, or process; the focus will be on the individual poetics of each artist,” says Fernández Torres. “It would be impossible to delve into how all the artists—on and off the island—are reflecting on the context of their place within Cuba, so with this exhibition format I simply want to allow the artists to share their experiences and personal stories.”

The 15 participating artists—Alexandre Arrechea, Javier Castro, Felipe Dulzaides, Juan Roberto Diago Durruthy, Luis Gárciga, Luis Gómez, Tony Labat, Dennis Izquierdo, Susana Pilar Delahante Matienzo, Reynier Leyva Novo, Tatiana Mesa Pajan, Eduardo Ponjuan, Wilfredo Prieto, Diana Fonseca Quinones and Grethell Rasúa—work in a range of media including video, installation, and painting. This exhibition offers SMFA visitors a unique view of Cuban society, culture, and art, through the artists’ very personal interpretations of their own histories and biographies.

Special thanks to the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo Wilfredo Lam, Havana, Cuba.

About the Curator
Jorge Antonio Fernández Torres (b. Havana, Cuba, 1965) is the director of the Centro de Arte Contemporáneo Wifredo Lam in Havana, Cuba, where he is also an art critic. His most recent curatorial project is the Cuban Pavilion at the 2013 Venice Biennale, “The Encyclopedic Palace,” and future projects include the 2013 Havana Biennale. Fernández Torres has curated and authored catalogs for numerous exhibitions in Cuba and abroad. His past curatorial projects include: “El Lugar Construido (The Constructed Place),” Fundacion Eberhard Schlotter (Altea, Spain), 2005; “Three Cuban Artists,” (Alicante, Spain), 2006 and 2007; Cuban selection of “Imágenes multimedias de un mundo complejo; Visiones a ambos lados del Atlántico (International Video Art)” at Contemporary Art Centre of Sevilla, Recoleta Cultural Centre (Buenos Aires), Mytho Gallery (Mexico D.F.), Ludwig Foundation (Havana) and French Alliance (Havana), all in 2008; and Havana Biennale, 2011. The Cuban native has a Bachelor in Art History from the University of Havana (1990) and currently serves as professor of contemporary art at the Higher Institute of Arts and lectures internationally.

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School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University
September 20, 2013

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