The Centro de Arte Contemporáneo Wifredo Lam (Wifredo Lam Contemporary Art Center), founded in 1983 and located in the heart of the historic Habana Vieja district, celebrated its 110th anniversary in December with the exhibition Wifredo Lam: entre la pintura y el grabado (Wifredo Lam: between painting and engraving). The show’s curator, José Manuel Noceda, is an expert on Lam’s life and work, and has been involved in this institution’s work since its opening.
Paintings, engravings, collages, pastels and drawings were integrated into a curatorial discourse that took into account the years when these pieces were made, using that as a starting point to create sections that evidenced some of the artist’s suggestive tendencies and obsessions. Another idea that prevailed in the curating was that of helping the viewer understand the paths that Lam entered and exited at will every time that he undertook a journey to find his personal language, expressing the power of symbols and signs from ancestral and modern cultures, symbols that unfortunately are still misunderstood and, above all, marginalized in the international art circuits.
(…) The exhibition “condenses” some of his best moments and creative periods, infrequently visited or revisited by diverse publics. Just when we thought that we were familiar with his work, formal codes, unmatched beauty, and emotion infused into every stroke, line, spot, and representation emerge from these small and medium formats with clarity and power, and we return to or begin a new path toward a comprehensive understanding of one of the great makers of 20th century art.