International 2010 Archives
Carlos Garaicoa, Overlapping
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin (Ireland)
Overlapping is an exhibition by one of Cuba's leading contemporary artists Carlos Garaicoa, whose work explores the social fabric of our cities through the examination of its architecture. The exhibition brings together new and recent works comprising sculpture, installation, drawing, video and photography, which explore the themes of architecture and urbanism, politics and history, and narrative and human culture. Since the early 1990s Garaicoa has developed his multi-
Garaicoa spends time exploring cities to discover their true meaning, he often illustrates his vision in large installations using various materials such as crystal, wax candles and rice-
Havana, the extraordinary city where he grew up, is a particular source of inspiration for Garaicoa's work and it is from this city's complicated development that his preoccupation with the detritus of the cityscape developed. After the Cuban revolution in 1959, many architectural projects and buildings were left unfinished or abandoned, in Havana and in other Cuban cities. This juxtaposition of architectural projects halted and abandoned, and the buildings of the colonial period, create a narrative of a complex political history that scars the landscape. Garaicoa refers to these as 'ruins of the future, where ruins are proclaimed before they even get to exist'. Garaicoa addresses these collapsed buildings in his black-
© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2012. All Rights Reserved
Exhibition June 10 -
Carlos Garaicoa, No way out, 2002, Installation. Wood table, wire and rice paper lamps, 140 x 330 x 330 cm. Courtesy Galleria Continua, San Gimignano/Beijing/Le Moulin. Installation view Irish Museum of Modern Art, 2010.
Photo: Denis Mortell
Garaicoa directly references iconic texts and writers through the titles of his pieces as well as within the sculptural works themselves, particularly the concept of the city as a symbolic space as it appears in the work of the writers Jorge Luis Borges and Italo Calvino. In On how my brazilian library feeds itself with fragments of a concrete reality, 2008, publications on Brazilian architecture, landscape and culture are stacked in rows interspersed with cement blocks. The front of the sculpture reveals the books spines while the back shows a number of bullets inserted into the cement. In her essay for the catalogue Sofia Hernandez Chong Cuy describes this work "As if it has been attacked, the sculpture sets in motion ideas of urban development and the weight and the wounds of progress".
Born in Havana, Cuba, in 1967, Carlos Garaicoa attended the Havana Instituto Superior de Arte in Cuba from 1989 to 1994. Garaicoa has exhibited extensively around the world, recent exhibitions include the Venice Biennale, 2009; Havana Biennale, 2009; La Caixa Cultural, Rio de Janeiro, 2008; Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, 2007; the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto, 2006, and Documenta II, Kassel, 2002.
The exhibition is curated by Seán Kissane, Acting Senior Curator: Head of Exhibitions, IMMA.