Curators from El Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Havana Invited to Organize Exhibition on Contemporary Cuban Art in Collaboration with the Bronx Museum
Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje Exhibition, Opening to the Public February 17, is Part of Historic Multi-Year Collaboration between the Two Institutions
Bronx, NY, January 23, 2017 – Opening on February 17, The Bronx Museum of the Arts will present Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje, an exploration of contemporary Cuban art from the 1970s to the present that looks at how Cuban artists both on the island and abroad have grappled with issues of identity, community, and the urban experience. Bringing together over 60 works by more than 30 artists from the Bronx Museum collection and other U.S. institutions and private collections, the exhibition will feature many artworks that will be publicly exhibited for the first time, including a newly commissioned sculpture and performance by Humberto Díaz as the culmination of a three-month residency at the Bronx Museum, and works by Belkis Ayón, Abel Barroso, José Bedia, Alejandro Campins, Los Carpinteros, Carlos Garaicoa, Kcho, Glenda León, Ana Mendieta, Diana Fonseca Quiñones, Eduardo Ponjuán, Wilfredo Prieto, Sandra Ramos, Esterio Segura, Meira Marrero and José Angel Toirac, and others.
On view through July 3, the exhibition is organized by the Bronx Museum and by Corina Matamoros and Aylet Ojeda Jequín, Curators of Contemporary Cuban Art at El Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (MNBA) in Havana, as part of a multi-year collaboration between the Bronx Museum and the MNBA to foster artistic and cultural exchange between Cuba and the United States.
“The Bronx Museum has been working with the Cuban arts community since the launch of the first Bienal de La Habana in 1984, and the Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje collaboration has grown out of that long-standing relationship,” said Executive Director of The Bronx Museum of the Arts Holly Block. “We invited Corina Matamoros and Aylet Ojeda Jequín to work with us in developing this exhibition. In doing so, they share with audiences in the U.S. their insights on the scope of artistic practice and the range of issues addressed by Cuban artists. The Bronx Museum has a strong and growing collection of contemporary Cuban art—Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje enables us to exhibit many of these works that have never been on public view and present the unique perspectives of Cuban curators.”
"Art opens new dimensions and offers us different possibilities. This is the spirit behind Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje, an exchange between two museums located in countries with well-known historical differences," said Corina Matamoros, the Curator of Contemporary Cuban Art at the MNBA. "Over the past five years, we came to know each other personally and professionally, sharing a great amount of knowledge about artworks, artists, and education programs within our respective institutions, as well as assessing the various ways we collect contemporary art."
"The cultural collaboration between the Bronx Museum and El Museo Nacional has created a wonderful opportunity to bridge the gap between our two great cities, New York and Havana," said Aylet Ojeda, Curator of Contemporary Cuban Art and Naïve Art at the MNBA. "We took inspiration from our unique environments to create this project of two museums in intercultural discussion, sharing our commonalities and differences, our histories, and our futures."
In conjunction with the Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje exhibition, the Bronx Museum will present a series of public programs to address urban issues of relevance to the Bronx community, examine the relationship between contemporary art and local history, and explore representations of multiculturalism and national identity. These include a Bronx Museum Open House on Sunday, March 5; a kickoff event to the Museum’s 8th Annual collaboration with the Havana Film Festival New York, including a film screening and live performance in partnership with the Hostos Center for the Arts & Culture; and a literary event with Founder and President of Latino Sports & Latinosports.com, author, and Bronxite Julio Pabón on his book Knockout: Fidel Castro visits the South Bronx.
Highlights of the exhibition include:
• Two sculptures by Humberto Díaz, as well as a work commissioned specifically for Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje. Díaz participated in an artist residency at the Bronx Museum in the fall of 2015 as part of the Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje, collaboration, and is returning for a second residency at the Bronx Museum from February to March 2017. On Sunday, March 5, Díaz will debut a new performance work at the Museum as part of the exhibition;
• A suite of 12 photographs by Ana Mendieta focused on her celebrated Silueta series.
• A collection of drawings, paintings, and video by Meira Marrero and José Angel Toirac that examine the political legacy of the country;
• A mahogany sculpture by Los Carpinteros inspired by the iconic architecture of the Russian Embassy in the Miramar neighborhood of Havana; and
• The photographic series Eighteen Reasons to Cease Making Art by Felipe Dulzaides, exhibited for the first time, which highlights his conceptually humorous, media-based work.
Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje is a multi-year collaboration between The Bronx Museum of the Arts and MNBA to foster cultural exchange. The partnership was launched in 2015 with Wild Noise: Artwork from The Bronx Museum of the Arts and El Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (MNBA), a groundbreaking exhibition of works from the Bronx Museum’s collection presented at MNBA in Havana. The partnership has also included artist exchanges with U.S. artist Mary Mattingly and Cuban artist Humberto Díaz; a teen exchange program; a series of educational and public programs; and the creation of a dual-language publication that extends the impact of Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje, beyond the audiences that participate directly in the initiative. Though works from MNBA’s collection will not to travel to the Bronx for Wild Noise/Ruido Salvaje at this time as originally planned, both institutions remain committed to the partnership and to exploring future loans from the MNBA to the Bronx Museum.