Posts Tagged ‘Cuba’

I recently returned from a trip to Cuba.  We went on our own this time, visiting an artist friend in Trinidad, a city in the south of the island.

You can see a video of my trip here. 

But what I wanted to do today is share some pictures of the process of compositing my collages.  I spent a morning on the patio of the Casa where we stayed, spreading out all of my fabrics, found objecs, papers, etc etc, and creating several compositions that I could later stitch.

I thought it would be fun for a reader to play “I spy” to discern what was the change each time, and why it was important.

Here we go!

Click on the image to see the captions.  The final piece is at the end. See how much the stitching adds to the image!

Vintage Cuba

Martha Ressler, Vintage Cuba,

Here is another smaller one. Click on the image to see the caption.

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I have to write today about someone else’s art.

My husband and I saw the art of Julio César Cepeda Duque in Cuba over 3 years ago, and it was love at first sight. The humor, the craftsmanship and artistry and use of found objects really grabbed us.

el-aviador

We determined to help this artist by bringing him to the US for an exhibition.

It took thousands of dollars, and work by dozens of people to obtain his visa (an O1 visa for person of “extraordinary ability.”) We put together what has become a hard working committee to organize his housing, the exhibit itself at GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in Reading PA, visits to schools and universities, festivals, and many home visits, picnics and dinners.

With Alexis.jpg

Now he is here.

Here we were picking him up at the Philadelphia airport at 3 AM August 11.

3 am at Philly airport.jpg

His first “assignment” was to make a sculptural mural for the city of West Reading.

It turned out to be 6 panels that together form the Island of Cuba. It will be installed Monday.

Final touches

Today will be an advance unveiling of the work at a reception in West Reading.

Then he’ll start work in his studio at GoggleWorks, getting ready for the exhibition opening night Sept 7.

He is such a nice, charming person, and so very hard working, focused, and efficient.

So many people have come foward to help, it has been a pure joy to meet them and work with Julio to make his visit an outstanding success.

8 17 Dale Paul Polly Julio

 

 

I have to admit I do enjoy organizing events, even though it puts a stress on my brain. Right now, though, I am juggling three major events at once, and my fear of forgetting something is causing me to lose sleep!

Tonight is the first public event organized by the Julio Cepeda Exhibition 2018 Committee. This is a group my husband and I started after seeing the art of Julio Cepeda in Cuba when we visited there last year.  I could instantly visualize an exhibition of his art at GoggleWorks Art Center in Reading, PA, and also visualize how making that happen could build bridges between Cuba and Reading, and within Reading itself.

We left our contact info with the gallery, and Julio contacted us. After I explained our idea, he was very enthusiastic about doing an exhibition. We talked with the art director of GoggleWorks, and started recruiting our friends, and friends of friends to the effort. Within a few months Julio had a contract for a show (Sept 8 to Oct 12 2018), we had a bank account, a Facebook Page and a website.  Our committee now consists of about 10 or so active people who meet every month, and tonight will be a fundraising mixer. I’m excited and, yes, nervous!

Then the next night is an opening at Art Plus Gallery. Nothing new there — happens every second Friday of every month.  But this time I’m the Featured Member artist. My art quilts are paired with a fabulous ceramic artist named Angela Shope. Even when I look at our work together, I concentrate on hers! I’m pretty sure everyone else will too, though, to be honest, they do go well together. So — I have butterflies about that event as well.

Then on Sunday we are hosting a fundraising event for the Reading Symphony Orchestra, “Art in the Garden.” We’ve been weeding like crazy, but we can’t keep up. We’ll just have our garden and studio looking the best we can, and try to relax.

Thank goodness, the next week we are going on vacation.

But of course that means more things to remember! My method is, and has always been, to make lists and check things off.

Feels so good to make that check mark!