Wednesday, November 9, 2016

P.U.E.N.T.E.~ Porque Ustedes Entienden Nuestro Temas En Candela~ No Way Out

The romanticized notion of Cuba's freedom has been a contested discussion for decades. The once chic, tropical island became economically paralyzed in 1959. Practically barricaded from the global world the tightly controlled island learned to adapt to scarce resources and forced to adapt to progressively faltering conditions.  Cubans were robbed of experiencing the fast paced advances occurring globally, yet despite these circumstances, there was opportunity for inventions of brilliant resilience. Devices made with mundane household goods. Designed recycled fashions reaching for high end creations. This unique personalized urban landscape of escape within their own homes and world functioned both as a means to keep up with contemporary society and as form of survival.

Cubans influence on Miami's landscape came to a peek upon the arrival of the Mariel Boatlift in 1980. A huge migration of refugees set adrift launching a monumental cultural mark in Miami. With the already lavish landscape of palm trees and beaches, the coast symbolized a contradictory freedom thanks to its simultaneous drug cartel scenarios and thriving disco inspired nightlife. Whatever impact it historically made- it was wondrous and created a bridge between South Florida and Cuba.

Currently both South Florida and Cuba face many looming and severe changes. These changes are as grave as rising sea levels; the debate of how capitalism may affect Cuba’s assets such its natural, uncontaminated land due to lack of pollution from industrialized companies; Miami's fickle real estate economy responsible for causing mass-gentrification to lower income neighborhoods; politics limiting both groups’ voices in relationship to decision making such as governor Rick Scott authorizing a deadly spray during the Zika scare without Dade County neighborhoods consent; and the young contemporaries in Cuba questioning why exchange programs are their only permit to travel freely. These are but just a few examples. 

The historical gap is closing in on the island of Cuba awakening possibilities for the people beyond their island and as well as affecting those in Miami with family and friends still on the island. Our reality in south Florida is grossly affecting our land, identity, economics- and reality. With the exhibit Inline image

Guido Mena, Essence of Anthropocence, 2016
Acrylic on Canvas

Inline image
  Natasha Perdomo,Loonie Rem, 2014-16
Acrylic on Canvas

P.U.E.N.T.E. ( Porque Ustedes Entienden Nuestro Temas En Candela~ No Way Out)
I search to relate both diverse yet rapidly changing cultural landscapes through artists perspectives and reponse to outcome and conclusion.

Exhibiting Artists:

Nestor Arenas

Willie Avedano

Orestes De La Paz

Dino Felipe

Michael Gray

Stephanie Hibbard

Catalina Jaramillo

Brandy Lynn

Guido Mena

Natasha Perdomo

Rafael Ramos

Cristina Victor

Art Basel Week with Art For Progress and Belaxis Buil

NYC based arts organization Art for Progress (AFP) teams up with local Miami artists to celebrate the link between Cuban and South Florida culture for Art Basel 2016.  The events will take place in South Beach with an art exhibit opening on Friday evening and a rooftop- fashion, music and performance art event titled, “Cosa Rica” is set for Saturday night.  
The art exhibition, “P.U.E.N.T.E.” which opens Friday evening (6:00pm – 9:00pm) December 2nd, will feature eleven artists (Nestor Arenas, Willie Avedano, Orestes De La Paz, Michael Gray, Stephanie Hibbard, Catalina Jaramillo, Brandy Lynn, Guido Mena, Natasha Perdomo, Rafael Ramos, Cristina Victor) working in various mediums (paintings, sculpture, installation, textile and drawings).  

After many decades of frosty relations between the U.S. and Cuba, the recent positive developments have brought a feeling of excitement and hope to the Cuban people of both South Florida and Cuba. The exhibition observes the relationship of the artist to their environment- changing landscapes and ability to adapt-retreat, refuge  and escape. The show which will run through Sunday, December 5th and is curated by Belaxis Buil whose work has been exhibited in “Intersectionality” and “Taz” at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami, Art Shanghai, China, Tacheles Museum, Germany and Art Basel Miami.

On Saturday, December 3rd, AFP will host a night of fashion, performance art, dance theater and music overlooking Miami Beach.  A site~specific fashion show featuring Belaxis Buil designs (contemporary Cuban inspired, ready to wear) will highlight the evening, but Cosa Rica will also feature provocative performance art, video and sound installations from Willie Avedano and dance theater performance by Hellektrick Danse Theatre.  The music for the evening will be curated by NYC based DJ/Producer Gatto.  This special night is a celebration of identity- revival and reinvention of the Cuban- Cuban American identity. The event is 8pm-12am, rooftop at 1052 Ocean Drive Miami Beach.

For more information about the artists visit:
Tickets for Cosa Rica are $25 and can be purchased on EventBrite 
About Art for Progress
Art for Progress (AFP) is a 501(c) 3 charity based in New York City ( AFP is committed to celebrating the arts, cultivating emerging artists, and developing a diverse, creative community with an on-line presence.