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"Cuba Oriente: Contemporary Painting From Eastern Cuba"
2004-09-22 until 2004-10-31
Riffe Gallery
Columbus, OH, USA United States of America

The Ohio Arts Councilís Riffe Gallery will present an exhibition of work by artists from the Oriente (eastern) region of Cuba September 22 Ė October 31, 2004. Cuba Oriente: Contemporary Painting from Eastern Cuba, a partnership of the Eastern Cuba Cultural Exchange and Meridian International Center, includes 60 exceptionally rich and vibrant works from what is often described as the heartland of Cuban culture.

At a distance of more than 650 miles from Havana, Oriente is not well known by Americans due to the complex relationship between Cuba and the United States. Cuba Oriente brings to light the stunning art of a colorful region. The 14 participating artists span generations. Several of the artists are self-taught, while others include a former museum director, professors and graduates of the regions art academies. The works on display in Cuba Oriente vary in subject and style. Classical and modern styles intertwine landscapes, genre scenes, abstract works, surrealistic themes and richly imagined comments on life in Cuba. Oil, acrylic and woodcut are the primary mediums.

The Eastern Cuba Cultural Exchange was founded by Clyde Hensley, whose travels and experiences in many countries and lifelong interest in art brought him to Eastern Cuba in 1995. There he met many artists, working under difficult conditions with few materials, and became passionate about helping them escape their regional isolation. He has since made numerous trips to the area, working with artists, cultural centers, museums and art schools in Santiago de Cuba and the surrounding provinces. As a result of his work, artist exchanges have developed and several exhibitions have been brought to the United States.

A series of Cuban portraits also will be on view during Cuba Oriente. The photographs by Somali-born, Columbus artist Abdi Roble will complement the exhibition, giving visitors a broader view of that nation and its people.


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