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Two Exhibitions on Carlos Garaicoa

Posmodern and Political


The announcement of the Cuba-United States thaw coincided with exhibitions, in two different art centers in Spain, on the oeuvre of Carlos Garaicoa, one of the most widely acclaimed among contemporary Cuban artists. Born in Havana in 1967, Garaicoa has been residing in Madrid for a decade now, though like a good conceptual artist, he continues to have his works carried out by a team based on the island. He sees architecture and urban space as opportunities to expose the dirty rags of political systems. Whether by manipulating them through exquisite montages or by recreating them with postmodern irony in models of cities, his works treat buildings and public space as triggers for reflection, in a strategy which Garaicoa has been using since his leap into international art circles, and which comes to the fore in the two Spanish shows. The one titled ‘Apparent Order’ has been curated by Vicente Todolí and is on view until 1 March at the Botín Foundation up north in Santander, while ‘Inconclusive Order’ is the work of Agustín Pérez Rubio and can be visited until 8 March at the 2 de Mayo Art Center (CA2M) in Móstoles (Madrid). Together they form a summa of many of the artist’s most famous works, from the ‘porno-indignation’ ceramic pieces to the Crown Jewels series, where symbols of repression like the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. or the KGB headquarters in Moscow are reproduced, not to mention the solid gold replicas of the Bundesbank and Banco de España buildings; good metaphors, certainly, of the current international situation.

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