Artist: Raquel Paiewonsky
Exhibition title: More than just skin deep
Curator: José Manuel Noceda Fernández
Dates: 08.02.2018 to 17.06.2018
Place: CAAM – San Antonio Abad. Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Spain.
Hours: Tuesday to Saturday from 10am to 9pm. and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
There is no doubt that Raquel Paiewonsky is one of the most important artists at the cutting edge of visual arts in the Caribbean, spanning the end of the last century and the beginning of this one. She has a well founded career having participated in highly relevant projects and international events of great importance such as the Havana Biennial (Cuba), the Biennale di Venezia and the Cuenca Biennial (Ecuador).
Since the nineties, she has clearly laid down the main ideas of her work. With fundamental coherence, reflected in her very first approach to art, the essence of her universe corresponds to her understanding of herself, always taking part in a life story which is a sounding-board for many other shared stories, autobiographical to a point but without getting caught up in an obvious or circumstantial narrative.
She is equally indebted to contributions and relativisations influenced by feminist ideas, coining a sensitivity opposed to the dominant male conventions when it comes to confining femininity from the outside to the narrow framework of domestic events. This contradicts the opposing polarity pre-established by the relations of patrilineal power.
These references underpin the distinctive way in which she deals with women´s dilemmas and establishes a kind of perspective focusing on identity, as well as on the questioning of gender roles and authority. Her symbolism insists on the body and its fragmentation, on matter and memory and on the deep layers of experience.
Considered today among the artists that most contribute to the formal and conceptual reformulation of the three-dimensional in her country, the Dominican Republic, as well as in the Caribbean region, she has an open-minded disposition stemming from her experience with a range of disciplines, among which are mainly painting, sculpture, installations, the use of photography and video. The aesthetics of the materials she uses provide her with qualities of expression suited to what she wishes to represent and also generate areas of contrast between the ductility and the soft touch of textiles, the fragility of the inflatable or the hardness and rusticity of cement and brick.
Taking inspiration from a poem by Fernando Pessoa, “Soy mi propio paisaje” (I am my own landscape), Raquel lets you catch a tiny glimpse of her symbolic production at the Atlantic Centre of Modern Art in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. I do not think there is a title better suited to her poetics. Although the heading establishes a basic metaphorical relationship in which everything or almost everything passes through her being, her vision goes far beyond the epidermis that surrounds it, delves deeper and prevents any reduction of her iconography to purely personal approaches. With no intended irreverence, but from a visceral sincerity, her imaginary undermines the limits of the inpidual in the re-mapping of essential human contents. Viewed from the perspective of this exhibition, Raquel constructs multiple meanings, possible associations with social and cultural realities, with landscapes and places with which the subject interacts in the global world.
José Manuel Noceda Fernández
Presentation of the exhibition and guided tour
Presentation of the exhibition book and guided tour