14ymedio, 27 January 2017 — The artist Tania Bruguera said Friday that her withdrawal from the exhibition Wild Noise at the Bronx Museum “is a moral decision.” During a press conference in New York’s Central Park, the director of the Hannah Arendt International Institute of Artivism (INSTAR) reported that “in Cuba there are artists who are ignored for saying what they think.”
This week Bruguera (born Havana, 1968) asked to withdraw her work Upside Down in the exhibition that will open on Friday, February 17, which includes pieces from some 30 artists from Cuba, including Los Carpinteros, Glenda León, Ana Mendieta, Kcho, Wilfredo Prieto and Humberto Díaz.
Initially the show was to be made up of works that Havana was going to lend to the New York museum, but in the end it decide not to allow them to be sent to the United States. US organizers tried to save the situation with the presentation of 60 pieces of Cuban art collected from other parts of the world.
Bruguera said it would be hypocritical that she is not allowed to exhibit her work in Cuba, but that her work would be used to clean up the image of what is happening on the island.
Bruguera said it would be hypocritical that she is not allowed to exhibit her work in Cuba, but that her work would be used to clean up the image of what is happening on the island. The artist pointed to the director of the Holly Block museum, for playing an important role in everything that happened.
This Friday, the artist stressed that her withdrawal from the show is part of “a long tradition among artists in the case when a context implies complicity or a political alliance that endangers the meaning of the work.”
“Being in this exhibition would be to obviate a part of history” that of the censored. “The Wild Noise exposition is contaminated by the political interests that hide the censorship that exists in Cuba,” the artist said.
At the press conference, Bruguera proposed donating to the victims of Hurricane Matthew the $2.5 million that the Bronx Museum, along with other institutions and individuals, “are collecting to reproduce a sculpture in Central Park and donate it to a country which already has a Martí on every corner.”
“If it is to help the Cuban people, it is not helped by projects of personal vanity,” said Bruguera, who asked for “institutional transparency from the Cuban government regarding the use and destination of donations and aid from governments, non-governmental institutions and individuals.”