Prayer for Obama I (detail), 2008, Polaroid prints by Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons
One of the most important artists to emerge from post-Revolutionary Cuba, María Magdalena Campos-Pons creates multimedia installations, large-scale Polaroids, sculpture, painting and performance that investigate history and memory, and their roles in the formation of identity. Drawing from her personal narrative as an Afro-Cuban woman living in the United States, Campos-Pons’ work transcends individual experience to explore crosscultural, universal phenomenon. Issues such as cultural hybridity, displacement, ties to family and home, and the dualities present in each individual are themes that continue to permeate her work.
In this new body of work, Life Has Not Even Begun captures the anticipation and tension inherent in exploring the unknown. From the artist re-discovering her Chinese ancestry, to her intensive study of midnight-blooming flowers, to the unexposed horrors of war, to the future of an imagined peaceful world, each work in this exhibition makes its own unexpected revelation.
Life Has Not Even Begun is curated by Neysa Page-Lieberman. A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies this exhibition at the Glass Curtain Gallery at Columbia College Chicago (1104 South Wabash Ave., 1st Floor, Chicago, IL 60605). The exhibition goes through March 6, 2009.