Hecho en Tránsito / Made in Transit is a project designed to foster intercultural dialogue between U.S. and Cuban artists primarily through the exchange and collaborative creation of artwork. The result is an experiment in visual dialogue sustained across time, place, cultural differences, and political transitions. 

 

What happens when artists who come from such different worlds encounter one another through art? How does access to information and materials in the U.S. and the constraint and lack in Cuba affect making art? What does a dialogue look like without words?

The project, initiated by curator and artist Katarina Wong,  is inspired by the Surrealist "exquisite corpse" game in which artists work on a single artwork. Four U.S. and four Cuban artists have been selected, from emerging to mid-career, and their work represents a variety of formal and conceptual interests. Starting in Fall 2015, Wong paired the artists and collected a piece of art from each of the them.

Over the next 12-18 months, the artist pairs transform each other’s work. Wong transports the pieces back and forth so that they are swapped four times over the course of the project, approximately every 3-4 months, resulting in exhibitions in Cuba and in the U.S. with accompanying programming, e.g., artist talks, panel discussions about the importance of cross-cultural dialogue, workshops that invite artists and/or viewers to collaborate on work together. 

Download the catalogue here.

 

U.S.-based Artists

Doug Beube was born in Canada and is based in Brooklyn, NY. He is paired with Lizandra Rodriguez. Doug is a mixed media artist who works in collage, installation, sculpture and photography. He exhibits both nationally and internationally. He had a recent one-person show at Bard College, Annandale-On-Hudson, NY, and his work will be included in 2018 exhibitions at the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Memphis, TN and Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ. His bookworks and photographs are in numerous private and public collections. Doug is an independent curator and worked with Allan Chasanoff from 1992-2014. “Odd Volumes: Book Art from the Allan Chasanoff Collection,” was exhibited in 2014/15 and the collection is now part of the Yale Art Gallery collection in New Haven, CT. Doug teaches classes in mixed media, artists’ books and photography and is invited to lecture at universities and art programs during the year. In 2016 he received a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant to pursue his artwork. His monograph about his artwork, Doug Beube: Breaking the Codex was published in 2011.

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Laurel Farrin is based in Iowa City, IA and is paired with Aylen Russinyol. Laurel's abstract paintings are explorations into how the mind/canvas receives and depicts information, turning it into concrete experience/painting. Farrin received an individual artist grant from the Washington, DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities. Residencies include: Roswell Museum and Art Center, NM; Yaddo, NY; Millay Colony for the Arts, NY; Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. Exhibitions include: Lesley Heller Gallery, NYC; Hallwalls, NY; The Bronx River Art Center; Carroll Square Gallery, DC; Des Moines Art Center; Florida Center for Contemporary Art; Spaces, OH; the Corcoran Gallery of Art; Washington Project for the Arts, DC. Laurel is an Associate Professor and former Head of the Painting and Drawing department at the University of Iowa. She received her BFA from Ohio University-Athens and MFA from the University of Maryland.

Hong Kong-born, Christopher K. Ho is based in NYC and is paired with Rigoberto Diaz Martinez. Christopher picks up threads of 1990s identity politics and weaves them into unlikely new patterns. His solo show Grown Up Art (2016, Present Co, NY) explores parenthood as a model for a practical political art. His Demoiselles d'Avignon (2013, Y Gallery, NY) refracted Western abstraction through the eyes of a future class of refined Chinese princelings, while Privileged White People (2013, Forever & Today, NY) examined the sensibility of artists who grew up during the affluent Clinton presidency. He has had solo exhibitions at Winkleman Gallery, NY (2010, 2008); FJORD, Philadelphia (2013); and Galeria EDS, Mexico City (2009). His work has been reviewed in the New York Times, Art in America, Modern Painters, Artforum, and ArtReview. He participated in the Incheon Biennial (2009), the Chinese Biennial Beijing (2008), and the Busan Bienniale (2008), and produced site-specific pieces for Storm King (2013) and the Cranbrook Art Museum (2011), where he was the 2010 Critical Studies Fellow. He has additionally taught at Virginia Commonwealth University and at RISD.

Travis LeRoy Southworth is a NYC-based visual artist and is paired with Lisbet Roldan. The content of Travis' artwork is intrinsically connected to image manipulation in the beauty industry, in which he participates in as part of his day job. His practice involves extracting bits of cultural detritus in the photo retouching process and employing methods of abstraction and erasure to explore contemporary culture’s fascination with its own dematerialization. Exhibitions include The Drawing Center (NYC), Martha Otero Gallery (Los Angeles), Mixed Greens Gallery (solo project, NYC), Thomas Robertello Gallery (Chicago), the Center for Curatorial Studies at the Hessel Museum of Art (NY). Awards include 2010 NYFA Fellowship (Photography); 2013 IAAB Artist Residency involving CERN/Large Hadron Collider (Switzerland); Artist in the Marketplace Program, The Bronx Museum of Art; BRIC Media Arts Fellowship. His work has been profiled in Time Out Chicago, Art Slant and L Magazine. MFA, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago; BFA, University of Arizona.


Cuba-based Artists

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Rigoberto Diaz Martinez is a conceptual artist based in Havana, Cuba and is paired with Christopher K. Ho. Rigoberto uses a variety of media to realize his time intensive projects, including photography, performance, video, etc. His work focuses on the imagined, rather than seen, lives of historical or abandoned objects and places. In “Protocol” he collected and then bottled water from dehumidifiers placed in four official offices, including the Ministry of Education; in “Dystopia” he photographed the now abandoned former panopticon prison that housed historical political prisoners including Fidel and Raul Castro. A recent graduate of the Instituto Superior del Arte in Havana, Rigoberto was chosen to participate in the recent 12th Havana Biennial in the Zona Franca, as well in galleries and museums in Colombia, Germany, and Mexico. 

Lizandra Rodriguez is a mixed media artist based in Havana and is paired with Doug Beube. As former set designer, Lizandra is inspired by street theatre as a way to stimulate direct communication with viewers. This carries through to her current work which envisions new spaces for human interactions to occur. Lizandra carves and paints with wax to create imaginary architectural settings, as well as create drawings of those spaces. She has shown her work in Cuba, including at the 12th Havana Biennial) as well as in Ecuador and Italy. Lizandra teaches at the Instituto Superior del Arte in Havana where she received her Bachelor in Plastic arts as well as in Stage Design.

Lisbet Roldan is a visual artist from Matanzas, Cuba, who now lives and works in Havana, Cuba, and is paired with Travis Leroy Southworth. Lisbet received her Bachelor's Degree in Visual Arts from the Escuela Profesional de Artes Roberto Diago and has exhibited in Cuba as well as recently in Ecuador. Through her work, she plays with the idea of memory and the psychological self, whether it is in "Tired Men," a series of photographs of iconic sculptures of Cuban historical figures depicted from the back to portrait "prints" created on an inkless dot matrix printer, their images only seen in the vague embossing created by the printer.

Aylen Russinyol is a Havana-based visual artist and is paired with Laurel Farrin. Aylen uses a variety of material (cement, oil paint, photographic collage) in her mixed-media paintings. She mashes up existing and imagined architectural spaces as she strives to show the similarities between architectural ruins and the pathos of the human condition. Her work has been exhibited at both the 11th and 12th Havana Biennials as well as in Cuba, Stockholm, and Italy. Aylen is graduate of the Instituto Superior del Arte in Havana, where she is now a professor. She also participated in a student exchange, studying at the Royal Institute of Art in Stockholm, Sweden

Katarina Wong is the NYC-based curator of the "Hecho en Transito / Made in Transit" project. In late 2014, she founded MADE, a consultancy dedicated to helping new audiences discover the diversity and richness of the contemporary art world. Prior, she was the curator of Edelman’s corporate art collection and gallery. Her previous independent curatorial work was shown at the Rotunda Gallery, Kenise Barnes Fine Arts, the Bronx River Center, and the Asian American Art Centre. Katarina has received numerous awards including the Lori Ledis Memorial Award for the Curatorial Initiative, the Cintas Fellowship for Cuban and Cuban-American artists, and a Pollock-Krasner grant, as well as residencies at Skowhegan, Ucross Foundation, and the Kunstlerhaus in Salzberg, Austria. Katarina exhibits her own work nationally and internationally and has an MFA from the University of Maryland and a Master in Theological Studies from the Harvard Divinity School in Buddhist Studies.