“CUBART” Brings the Spirit of Last Year’s Havana Biennial to the Lower East Side


The Lower East Side pop-up gallery Site/109 is putting on a new exhibition of contemporary Cuban art inspired by — and including many of the artists from — the ninth Havana Biennial, which took place in 2012. Emilio Calleja, founder of Latin American art fair arteamericas, and Roberto Borlenghi, president of Miami’s Pan American Art Projects, have joined forces to bring some of Cuba’s most well known artists to the LES for a survey of contemporary Cuban art that demonstrates how the country’s politics have shaped its art scene, “CUBART: Contemporary Cuban Art,” which opens tonight and remains on view through March 31.

The transplant show attempts to capture the spirit of the recent Caribbean biennial, which featured artists who drew heavily on historic references in their work and social issues. Miami-based curator Irina Leyva-Perez has selected artists like Alexandre Arrechea, a former member of the art collective Los Carpinteros, whose recent large scale, New York City skyline-inspired sculptures are on view at this week’s ADAA Art Show. The show also includes work by Abel Barroso, Luis Enrique Camejo, Manuel Fors, KCHO, Sandra Ramos, and others.


— Alanna Martinez

(Top image: Detail from Jose A. Toirac, “Untitled (Che y Fidel),” 2003, Courtesy of Pan American Art Projects; Bottom image: Abel Barroso, “Pinball del Emigrante,” 2012, Courtesy of Pan American Art Projects.)