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First solo exhibition of Diana Fonseca Quiñones' work ever presented outside of Cuba opens at Sean Kelly
Installation view of Diana Fonseca Quiñones at Sean Kelly, New York, January 8 - February 6, 2016. Photography: Jason Wyche, New York. Courtesy: Sean Kelly, New York.

NEW YORK, NY.- Sean Kelly is presenting a solo exhibition of paintings, sculptures, and video works from Havana-based artist Diana Fonseca Quiñones. This is the first solo exhibition of Quiñones’ work ever presented outside of Cuba.

Quiñones’ practice is built on using simple, commonplace objects and experiences from daily life to devise narratives that mix reality and fiction. Drawing on seemingly regular, everyday moments, such as sharpening a pencil or lighting a match, Quiñones’ work employs poetic metaphors that cleverly comment on broader social issues and universal human desires.

Featured in the exhibition is the video titled Pasatiempo. Through the device of a playful childhood pastime — sewing her own hand with superficial stitches — Quiñones presents a metaphor about the collective longings of Cuban society, who dream of being able to travel or own their own house or car. Using the palm, Quiñones deliberately draws on the symbolism of the hand and its mystical associations as a map of the future.

The exhibition also presents three paintings from a series of work titled Degradación. For these works, Quiñones peels fragments of paint from the facades of buildings in old Havana and builds them up in layers until they transform into beautiful and unique abstract compositions. The title reflects the parallels between the literal degradation of colors in the paint fragments and, in the most pejorative sense of the word, as a synonym of deterioration, specifically in relation to Havana.

Diana Fonseca Quiñones graduated from the Instituto Superior de Arte, Havana, Cuba in 2000 and from the Academia de Bellas Artes de San Alejandro, Havana, Cuba in 2005. Since then she has had three solo exhibitions in Cuba and has been featured in numerous international group exhibitions, including Sean Kelly’s 2015 summer group exhibition, By the Book; Dilated Biography: Contemporary Cuban Narratives at The School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (2013); Spray, The Hochhaus Kokerei Hansa Museum, Dortmund, Germany (2011) and Inside confluences, the second edition of Contemporary Cuban Art at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, New Mexico (2009). Quinones work was included in the 12th Havana Biennial, in Havana, Cuba (2015) and she is the recipient of the 2015 EFG ArtNexus Latin America Art Award.

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