ART OnCuba 00
In these times, when many are advocating the end of the print media and favoring digital publishing, undertaking a project like this can evoke the most impassioned utopian ideas.
We had the good fortune of coinciding in the same space and time with a team that saw the necessity of a magazine with these characteristics for promoting Cuban art outside the boundaries of the island, a magazine holding that undeniable magic of the printed word that has captivated humanity for centuries.
Hugo Cancio, president of the Fuego Media Group, and his fantastic production team for OnCuba magazine set about finding the staff, examining options, and opening the way for this new publication. Through that process, we became even more firmly convinced that the realization of Art OnCuba was essential for achieving an ecumenical perspective on Cuban art, creating space for projects generated by artists on the island and by those who live in other parts of the world. The opportunity of taking this knowledge to the international circuit was another defining factor for us. In a world where magazines focused on the present almost always champion poetics legitimized by institutions and the market, we want to make a difference by providing information in each issue that connects contemporary visual production with the history of art in Cuba, offering a perspective on the past that enriches and reveals keys to the present.
For this issue, No. 0, we have put together a diverse and comprehensive selection, beginning with exhibitions that reflect maturity in investigative, curatorial and museographic work, as well as the projection and influence of Cuban art in U.S. circles. The first cluster of articles takes a look at a solo show by Tonel at Factoría Habana described as “an extraordinary exercise in systemization”; the lucidity of two Cuban curators, José Manuel Noceda and Nelson Herrera Ysla, in their conception and production of exhibitions revealing new ways of appreciating Wifredo Lam’s work and the course of contemporary architecture and graphic design, espectively; Eduardo Ponjuán’s most recent proposal for Galería Habana; the inclusion of two works by J.M. Fors in the Pilara Collection; and the magnitude of Alexandre Arrechea’s NOLIMITS in New York.
Another section of Art OnCuba is devoted to exploring Cuba’s participation in the Venice Biennale, with a historiographical overview that begins in 1952 and ends with projections for Cuba’s 2013 pavilion, curated by Jorge Fernández and Giacomo Zaza. In taking a look at galleries that work with Cuban art in and outside the country, as well as art collecting in its different forms, we have included interviews with Luis Miret, director of Galería Habana, and with Howard Farber and Alfredo Sosabravo. And yet another cluster of articles seeks to inform our readers about projects—both recent and in progress—by Cuban artists from different generations, including reviews of the work of Sandra Ramos, Inti Hernández, and Carlos Martiel; an interview with Tomás Sánchez, and more. We also pay our own special homage to Cuba’s national fine arts museum, the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, as it celebrates its centennial, and give you all the details regarding the release of a photography portfolio by Iván Cañas.
Art OnCuba is born. What will be simply a surprise, or an impact, for readers has been for us a convergence of various perfect moments, joined by perseverance, chance, and experience. That is why we are confident about this magazine, bolstered by our certainty that its content and visual quality will take it very far.
As expert competitors in the very Cuban game of dominoes, we drew the double-blank—an unexpected move, surprising and magnifying the interest of everyone who is paying attention to the game.
Editor in Chief / Publisher
Executive Managing Editor
Editorial Director / Editor
Design & Layout
Translation and English copyediting
Commercial director & Public Relations / Cuba