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Cuban artist Yoan Capote's inaugural solo exhibition in London opens at Ben Brown Fine Arts
Yoan Capote, Isla (la espera), 2012.

LONDON.- Ben Brown Fine Arts presents EMOTIONAL OBJECTS - the Cuban artist Yoan Capote’s inaugural solo exhibition in London. A leading figure of the burgeoning Cuban art scene, Capote creates psychologically resonant sculptural works in a myriad of media that address a multiplicity of themes - ranging from those of the human condition (isolation, anxiety, desire, claustrophobia, obsession) to cultural identity, migration, politics and the economy.

While Capote’s works are clearly informed by his experiences growing up and living in a politically turbulent and isolated nation, there is a universal dialogue to them that transcends the autobiographical. Despite the serious implications behind his work, there is sardonic playfulness in their presentation, recalling the Surrealists and their interest in the paradoxical. From Will of Power, a monumental ladder affixed to a rocking chair base; to Secreto (Mucho por decir), two rubber molds of ears connected by a soundproof glass tube; to Romance, conjoined umbrellas; and Casados, bronze cast shoes that literally meld into one another (belonging to collectors Dasha Zukova and Roman Abramovich), his work promotes immediate humorous associations that go on to reveal more complex issues.

Isla (La Espera) is a sculptural painting fastidiously fashioned from nails, fishhooks and oil based on the Capote’s childhood memories of growing up on a politically isolated island, longing to know the United States and beyond. What initially registers as a serene, benign seascape turns into a foreboding image connoting danger and impenetrability as the materiality of the piece is explored. Migrants consists of two slender cast bronze trees that are seemingly uprooted from the earth as they anthropomorphize into human feet that lay futilely on the ground, serving as a metaphor for the physical and psychological conflicts associated with the experience of migration.

The exhibition also includes a steel installation realized exclusively for this show, entitled Lacerante (mi silencio), as well as examples of his highly conceptual photographic work.

Born in 1977, Capote lives and works in Havana, Cuba. He studied at the Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana, and his work has been exhibited extensively in the United States, Europe and Cuba. Capote has received awards and grants from prestigious institutions such as the Guggenheim Foundation, UNESCO, the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, New York, and the Brownstone Foundation, Paris. Notable collections include Museum Beelden aan Zee, The Netherlands; Arizona State University Art Museum, Arizona; 21c Museum Hotel, Louisville, Kentucky; Daros Latinamerica AG, Zurich; Kadist Art Foundation, Paris and San Francisco; and the Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, Ohio.

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