José Bedia

August, 11 - September, 20, 2016

JPEG - 82.7 kb
Lithograph. 2003. 56 x 77.5 cm

José Bedia (Havana, Cuba, 1959 – ) was one of the most important artists to emerge on the scene during the 1980s, and is considered one of the most significant Cuban visual artists of all time. He is a member of the postmodern avant-garde movement that arose in Cuba in the 1980s. He is the author of a wide-ranging oeuvre, based primarily on painting, drawing, and installation art. Regardless of the medium he uses, however, his works are the result of deep introspection, in which he delves into the Afro-Cuban and Indo-American cultures, among others. Rather than locking himself up in his atelier, Bedia’s work has been closely tied to his travels, with Mexico, Peru, the United States, Kenya, and Angola being just some of the places around the world that have inspired his thoughts and output. This fieldwork imbues his art with a strong anthropological bent, giving him access to an evasive kind of knowledge rarely available to the typical tourist in a rush to see it all. This first-hand contact and communion gives rise to an entire imaginary inspired by popular beliefs and wisdom, as well as myths, which Bedia uses to engender other realities. The works selected for this exhibition are the result of his residency at the Vinalhaven studio in Maine, the Tamarind studio in Alburquerque, the studios of La Polígrafa in Barcelona, and work done at the Taller Arte Dos Gráfico in Bogota. Bedia’s interest in the graphic and schematic representations once and still made by original cultures, in graphic depictions and synthesis, are always present and developed in the artist’s oeuvre, and are also vividly manifest in his graphic work, which uses simple lines to construct references to the everyday and the ritual, often with a certain degree of humor. Engravings frequently make it possible to display the line in a purer form, in a kind of perfect emotional x-ray of the concept of communication through the line. Line work has been vital to the artist as the first step in the development of his work. The drawings created by ancient cultures—rather organic and schematic in nature, with an emphasis on undulating lines—have always interested him. These drawings also incorporate geometrizations, as an approximation to the processes involved in the abstraction of an image, thus creating a visual synoptic scheme. The use of the line by the human being, as a creator, dates back to the earliest times, and has always been a constant. The line is a means for gaining access to thoughts and feelings, to our interior, rendering them visible, sensitive. The line is the foundation of the visual arts in general. Between the oldest lines and signs on cave walls or exposed rocks and the advent of the first systems of writing, the thousands of years in between witnessed the emergence of different uses of lines and drawings, uses that are now rescued by the artist in his work. The exhibition to be presented at Galería Enlace Arte Contemporáneo consists of fourteen works produced in some of the most important engraving studios around the world. The Litografías (Lithographs) exhibition by José Bedia is open to the public at Galería Enlace through September 20, from Monday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. The gallery is located at Avenida Camino Real 1123, San Isidro. No entry fee.