Interview with Carlos Garaicoa

The Triumph of What Is Imaginary on What Is Real

/ 2 September, 2015

(…) In your pieces, the city and its ruins are present, but also their history, at times from archives, other times invented. Do you think your work reinvents or rediscovers architecture?
When I began to do things with the city, I started to notice the fragments, the texts, the numbers, elements I could, in a given way, place in the center of what I wanted to suggest. There is much narrative in my work—writing, telling stories—and the city gives us that opportunity: it offers you an empty space. The interest in ruins has also grown, ruins as empty space, as a space where you can begin by zero, writing new stories. (…) I am interested in that hard, harsh, decadent space and how based on that decadence you, on one part, make an act of social analysis, political if you want to, of the space in itself and, on the other hand, how can you anyway surround it through that fiction, that invention of space again, that reinvention of architecture, of this new mise-en-scéne that simply stops being that supposed critical denunciation or look on a violent reality and may go as far as turning into so many other things. (…)
You have been working between Madrid and Havana for a long time. The change of circumstances has surely incorporated other referents and experiences to your work. Which are those experiences and what contributions have you perceived in your work in this coming and going between both capitals?
(…) Really, leaving to Madrid practically without return in the last years has evidently been because of exhaustion with the Cuban context which does not allow you many things: it does not allow you to produce comfortably; you have to battle with a lot of bureaucrats, with controls of what you think and want to say, and so on. (…)
I have been travelling since 20 years ago. I think my work has been growing, has fed with other needs. I have found other audiences. I think this is one of the most important things. The audiences begin to understand our work from another point of view that is not that of the persons who understood your work here in Cuba. (…)

Claudia Taboada Churchman

Claudia Taboada Churchman

Havana, 1990. Art critic and curator. She currently works in Villa Manuela Gallery. Her texts have been published in ArteCubano, Revolución y Cultura, La Jiribilla, Noticias de ArteCubano, among others. In 2015 she received the Curatorial Award granted by the Center for the Development of Visual Arts for the project Pintura expandida.

Cecilia Crespo

Cecilia Crespo

Cecilia habla sin parar, aunque también escucha, pregunta y responde gran parte del día. Su arista silente solo se vislumbra cuando se aferra a su teclado o cuando lee. Le apasiona su familia y desde hace rato, la cultura cubana y un delicioso libro que escribe para distribuirlo gratuitamente entre sus amigos(as): Manual de cocina práctica y exótica.

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