Cuba: Art of the Fantastic, curated by Abelardo Mena, brings together four masterful artists, Juan Carlos Verdial, Alicia de la Campa, Alexander González, and Vicente Hernández, who offer personal speeches through figurative, vibrant, and highly emotive paintings and drawings. Full of imagination and fantasy, these artists are joined by their eagerness to freely reinterpret symbols of the Cuban culture, of its geography and history, Catholic and African popular religions, proverbs of the Cuban popular idiosyncrasy, and by their deep knowledge and intertextual game with iconic works of the Western, European, and United States, all places where they have gathered considerable momentum.
The high and low elements of their works are integrated when creating fantastic worlds, made up of beings with a human and animal side, and in some cases mixed with amazing machines. The source of inspiration for these dimensions comes from the artists’ close relatives and from his/her intimate obsessions or traumatic situations, where good sense and delirium are merged without transition.
Far from the surrealism of the Cuban artists of the 30´s and 60´s of the last century, the invocations to science fiction or lysergic trips characterizing the Cuban visual arts during the 70´s, the construction of these fantastic worlds undoubtedly stems from the rupture with a troublesome and uncertain social landscape.
Cuba: Art of the Fantastic is the first exhibition of Cuban visual production in Charlotte and the surrounding region, and an outstanding ensemble of the Latin American modernity since the beginning of the 20th century.