Untitled, from the series El Viaje

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series El Viaje, 2004

Archival pigment print

26.75 x 42 inches

Untitled

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, 2004

Archival pigment print

22 x 32 inches

Untitled, from the series El Viaje

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series El Viaje, 2004

Archival pigment print

26.75 x 42 inches

Untitled, from the series El Viaje

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series El Viaje, 2004

Archival pigment print

26.75 x 42 inches

Untitled, from the series El Viaje

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series El Viaje, 2004

Archival pigment print

26.75 x 42 inches

Untitled, from the series El Viaje

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series El Viaje, 2004

Archival pigment print

26.75 x 42 inches

Untitled, from the series Rail-Road

Lissette Solórzano

Untitled, from the series Rail-Road, 2002

Silver print

16 x 20 inches

Havana Coastline, from the series Malecon

Lissette Solórzano

Havana Coastline, from the series Malecon, 2004-05

Archival pigment print

23.5 x 31.5 inches

Untitled, from the Rail-Road Series

Lissette Solórzano

Untitled, from the Rail-Road Series, 2002

Archival pigment print

16 x 20 inches

Untitled, from the Metaphor of Silence Series

Lissette Solórzano

Untitled, from the Metaphor of Silence Series, 2012

Archival pigment print

16 x 20 inches

Con-traccion

Reinaldo Echemendía Cid

Con-traccion, 2012

Silver print

17 x 21 inches

Compartido (Share), from the series Humo (Smoke)

Néstor Martí

Compartido (Share), from the series Humo (Smoke), 2004

Chromogenic dye coupler print

24 x 35 inches

Spray

José Julián Martí

Spray, 2010

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

Estocada final

José Julián Martí

Estocada final, 2010

Chromogenic dye coupler print

24 x 32 inches

La Espera

José Julián Martí

La Espera, 2003

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

Curioso

José Julián Martí

Curioso, 2004

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

The Wave

Eduardo García

The Wave, 2011

Archival pigment print

12.5 x 18.75 inches

Parallel Lives

Eduardo García

Parallel Lives, 2011

archival pigment print

12.5 x 18.75 inches

Solitude

Eduardo García

Solitude, 2010

archival pigment print

12.5 x 18.75 inches

El Bohemio

Alejandro Pérez

El Bohemio, 2014

Archival pigment print

19.75 x 27.5 inches

Leidy y Lisandra

Alejandro Pérez

Leidy y Lisandra, 2012

archival pigment print

21.5 x 15.5 inches

Mila en el Espejo

Alejandro Pérez

Mila en el Espejo, 2012

archival pigment print

21.5 x 15.5 inches

Tabaquero, from the series My Town

Leysis Quesada

Tabaquero, from the series My Town, 2001

Archival pigment print

21.5 x 32 inches

Basilla, from the series My Town

Leysis Quesada

Basilla, from the series My Town, 2004

Archival pigment print

23.5 x 33.5 inches

La Santa

Leysis Quesada

La Santa, 2008

Archival pigment print

23.5 x 33.5 inches

Untitled #5, from the series Epilogue II

Adrián Fernández

Untitled #5, from the series Epilogue II, 2012

Archival pigment print

30.25 x 43.25 inches

Untitled #35, from the series Epilogue II

Adrián Fernández

Untitled #35, from the series Epilogue II, 2012

Archival pigment print

30.25 x 43.25 inches

Untitled #16, from the series Epilogue II

Adrián Fernández

Untitled #16, from the series Epilogue II, 2012

archival pigment print

30.25 x 43.25 inches

Artemisa, from the series Cañeros

Raúl Cañibano

Artemisa, from the series Cañeros, 2001

Archival pigment print

31 x 24 inches

Untitled, From the series Improper Conduct

Alejandro González

Untitled, From the series Improper Conduct, 2008

Archival pigment print

26.5 x 26.5 inches

Sin Título, From the Series Improper Conduct

Alejandro González

Sin Título, From the Series Improper Conduct, 2008

Archival pigment print

26.5 x 26.5 inches

Untitled, From the Series Reconstruction

Alejandro González

Untitled, From the Series Reconstruction, 2012

Archival pigment print

24 x 30.5 inches

Untitled, from the series Improper Conduct

Alejandro González

Untitled, from the series Improper Conduct, 2008

Archival pigment print

21 x 26.75 inches

Sin Título, From the Series Improper Conduct

Alejandro González

Sin Título, From the Series Improper Conduct, 2008

Archival pigment print

26.75 x 21 inches

Republica de Cuba

Juan Carlos Alom

Republica de Cuba, 2011

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

Cosecha de Arroz

Juan Carlos Alom

Cosecha de Arroz, 2010

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

Preocopaciones a la hora de comer

Juan Carlos Alom

Preocopaciones a la hora de comer, 1989

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

Paradise Angels

Juan Carlos Alom

Paradise Angels, 2010

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

Niurka

Juan Carlos Alom

Niurka, 1991

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

En la Casa de Nuevo Vedado

Juan Carlos Alom

En la Casa de Nuevo Vedado, 1989

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

Malecón de la Habana

Juan Carlos Alom

Malecón de la Habana, 2010

Silver print

15 x 16 inches

Wandering Ways No.25

Jorge Louis Álvarez Pupo

Wandering Ways No.25, 2010

Archival pigment print

27 x 39 inches

Wandering Ways No.42

Jorge Louis Álvarez Pupo

Wandering Ways No.42, 2011

Archival pigment print

27 x 39 inches

Wandering Ways No.11

Jorge Louis Álvarez Pupo

Wandering Ways No.11, 2009

Archival pigment print

27 x 39 inches

Havana Monopoly

Kadir López Nieves

Havana Monopoly, 2013

archival pigment prints on aluminum

Nine 12 x 12 inch 

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", Galiano #209

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", Galiano #209, 1995

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

11 x 14 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

11 x 14 inches

Untitled, Ave. de Paula

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, Ave. de Paula, 2007

Silver print

16 x 20 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

10 x 12 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

11 x 14 inches

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana"

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", 2015

Silver print

16 x 12 inches

Untitled, from the series La Habana

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series La Habana, 2002

Archival pigment print

14 x 11 inches

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana"

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana"

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana"

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", 2015

Silver print

16 x 12 inches

Untitled

Pedro Abascal

Untitled

Silver print

16 x 20 inches

Untitled

Pedro Abascal

Untitled

Silver print

16 x 20 inches

Untitled, Calle 17

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, Calle 17, 1991

Silver print

16 x 20 inches

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", Calle de los Mercaderes

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", Calle de los Mercaderes, 2001

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", Calle del Obispo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the essay "Dossier Habana", Calle del Obispo, 2005

Silver print

12 x 16 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

11 x 14 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

11 x 14 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

11 x 14 inches

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Pedro Abascal

Untitled, from the series Del Ensayo

Archival pigment print

14 x 11 inches

Untitled, from the series La Banda de Nuevo Ritmo (Havana Jam Session)

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series La Banda de Nuevo Ritmo (Havana Jam Session)

Inkjet print & mixed media

12 x 12 inches

Untitled, from the series La Banda de Nuevo Ritmo (Havana Jam Session)

Liudmila & Nelson

Untitled, from the series La Banda de Nuevo Ritmo (Havana Jam Session)

Inkjet print & mixed media

12 x 12 inches

Balsa

Michel Pou

Balsa, 1994

archival pigment print

25.125 x 35.375 inches

Se Permuta

Arien Chang

Se Permuta, 2007

Archival pigment print

19.5 x 27 inches

Rodillos

Arien Chang
Rodillos, 2007
Archival pigment print
27.5 x 19.5 inches

Sin Título, from the series Fachadas

Donis Dayán

Sin Título, from the series Fachadas, 2012

Archival pigment print

18.5 x 32 inches

Poker Face, from the series Stolen Talent

Pavel Acosta

Poker Face, from the series Stolen Talent, 2009-10

Chromogenic dye coupler print

30.625 x 45 inches

Poker Face, from the series Stolen Talent

Pavel Acosta

Poker Face, from the series Stolen Talent, 2009-10

Chromogenic dye coupler print

30.625 x 45 inches

Palabras (Words)

Alfredo Ramos

Palabras (Words), 2015

Lambda print on duraclear

(12) 17.5 x 21 inches

Untitled, from the series Discurso Propio

Ramsés Batista

Untitled, from the series Discurso Propio, 2010

Archival pigment print on canvas

43.5 x 30.25 inches

La Tormenta, from the series Discurso Propio

Ramsés Batista

La Tormenta, from the series Discurso Propio, 2008

Archival pigment print on canvas

30.25 x 43.5 inches

Untitled, from the series Discurso Propio

Ramsés Batista

Untitled, from the series Discurso Propio, 2010

Archival pigment print on canvas

30.25 x 43.5 inches

Black Shoes

René Peña

Black Shoes, 2007

Archival pigment print

24 x 24 inches

Untitled

René Peña

Untitled, 2007

Archival pigment print

24 x 32 inches

Press Release

Jenkins Johnson Gallery, San Francisco is pleased to present The Light in Cuban Eyes, a group exhibition opening Thursday, September 10, 2015. The exhibition of contemporary Cuban photography has many works that are being shown on the west coast for the first time. Participating artists include: Pedro Abascal, Pavel Acosta, Juan Carlos Alom, Jorge Luis Álvarez Pupo, Ramsés Batista, Raúl Cañibano, Arien Chang, Donis Dayán, Reinaldo Echemendía Cid, Adrián Fernández, Eduardo García, Alejandro González, Liudmila + Nelson, Kadir López Nieves, José Julián Martí, Néstor Martí, René Peña, Alejandro Pérez, Michel Pou, Leysis Quesada, Alfredo Ramos, and Lissette Solórzano.


The photographs featured at Jenkins Johnson Gallery were created during and after Cuba’s “Special Period”, occurring after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1992, and the withdrawal of Soviet backing. Some of the photographs betray this sense of hardship, while many also reveal the energy and beauty of the island and its people. Works range from traditional silver gelatin prints of street scenes to three-dimensional, digitally created images.

 

Many of the photographs are black and white silver gelatin prints. Lisette Solórzano, José Julián Martí, and Perdo Abascal work primarily in a traditional style and exhibited in both solo and group exhibitions at the XI Biennale of Havana in 2012. Young photographer Eduardo García has exhibited across Latin America and has won many awards for his work. Lisette Solórzano’s photograph from the Rail–Road series of silver gelatin prints depicting people riding a packed train harkens back to the iconic photograph Trolley – New Orleans by Robert Frank. José Julián Martí Professionally trained as a social documentary photographer creates dramatic images with the life and motion of Cuba as his subject. Self-taught, Pedro Abascal’s pieces have an authentic quality that mirrors the
atmosphere of the Havana streets he photographs. His image of young boys rollerblading in the boulevard is in the style of the intimate and candid moments captured by Henri Cartier Bresson in his photograph Child Playing in Ruins. Eduardo García finds photography to be the most immediate and truest form of an ephemeral moment, often depicting the incandescence of light and water, such as in his image The Wave, akin to Martin Munkácsi’s Three Boys at Lake Tanganyika portraying these children in a moment of freedom.


The exhibition also features works in vibrant and stunning colors such as the photographs by Pavel Acosta and Alejandro González. It is illegal in Cuba to import and register a car made after the year 1959 and in response to that people have created alternative solutions by indiscernibly renovating legal vehicles unbeknownst to authorities. In Pavel Acosta’s series Stolen Talent he photographs these revamped cars, commenting on “peoples’ ideals and what they do to achieve them”. The young artist Alejandro González depicts vivacious images in screaming color is his series Conducta Impropio (Improper Conduct) that uncovers parts of society repressed by officialdom, specifically the LGBT community, where he reveals the reality of a Cuba that has been hidden away.

Artists René Peña and Ramsés Batista take an orchestrated approach to their photography, creating remarkably poignant and textured pieces utilizing the human form and object. René Peña aims his focus inward and uses his self-portraits as a means of communication rather than just expression; his work is in many private collections in Miami as well as the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Ramsés Batista’s whimsical and narrative photographs are characterized by his use of subtle contrast, long exposures, and a keen eye for craft.


Liudmila & Nelson and Kadir López Nieves work in a less traditional manner, while retaining a quintessentially Cuban style. The abstracted and manipulated photographs of Liudmila & Nelson’s composites of time and space challenge the viewer to see a multifaceted world, in which the past and present seem to coincide. Their work was featured in the Cuban pavilion at the 2013 Venice Biennale. Nelson Ramírez, one half of the Liudmila & Nelson duo, is the director of the Fototeca de Cuba, Cuba’s repository of photography. Kadir López Nieves presents a pastiche of pre-revolution imagery of company stocks and the bourgeoisie lifestyle as parody of socio-economic power, played out on a Monopoly board of his own design in his mixed media series Habana Monopolio.

 

With a historic push by President Obama the US and Cuba have restored diplomatic relations. In August, Secretary of State John Kerry raised the American flag over the embassy, and he is the highest-ranking diplomat to visit Cuba in the last seven decades. For more than half a century poor relations between Cuba and the United States led to little interaction between the Cuban art community and the US, even though the trade embargo did not restrict the sale and purchase of artwork. While Cuba’s economy was in shamble its cultural life thrived. Artists created in countlessstyles and methods, as The Light in Cuban Eyes shows. The artists in the exhibit present divergent bodies of work that pay tribute to the rich cultural history of their homeland.

 

The Light in Cuban Eyes is inspired by Melanie P. Plonsker’s personal collection, which she hand-carried back to America over several trips between 2002 and 2012. The exhibition coincides with the recent release of a book of the same title, featuring over 170 works of art by more than 50 artists. The book, published by Lake Forest College Press, is the only book on contemporary Cuban photography and is the first North American publication supported by the Cuban Ministry of Culture and the Fototeca de Cuba, Cuba’s repository of photography, akin to the Smithsonian’s Photography Department in Washington, DC.