YAMILYS BRITO A VERY PERSONAL STAMP

Art On Cuba - - Index -

The ref­er­en­tial sources and the spirit of a work with a mean­ing­ful con­tem­po­rane­ity—that of Yamilys Brito (Ha­vana, 1972)—are to be found in the past. Per­haps this vo­ca­tion by the artist of pay­ing at­ten­tion to the splen­did his­tory of Cuban en­grav­ing shaped, in the course of time, the iden­tity of her po­et­ics of full Cuban lore.

With her personal and pol­ished lan­guage, Yamilys has con­trib­uted to the re­an­i­ma­tion of en­grav­ing as an ex­pres­sion in the vis­ual arts panorama in Cuba.

In foun­da­tional works of her lan­guage, the spirit of old en­grav­ings bear­ing wit­ness of life in the Island in colo­nial times is re­vealed to us. Here it is worth to high­light Yamilys Brito’s orig­i­nal op­er­a­tion in her pro­posal. If Garn­eray, Mialhe or La­plante “pho­tographed” Cuban scenes in the 19th cen­tury, Yamilys’s look, at­ten­tive and loaded with other mean­ings and in­ten­tions in her re­la­tion­ship with reality, trans­lates streets or names of streets in Ha­vana in a speech enun­ci­at­ing car­di­nal top­ics in our so­ci­ety and their con­tem­po­rane­ity: a pen­e­trat­ing dis­course loaded with as­so­ci­a­tions and mean­ings, with places and names of our en­vi­ron­ment as mo­tives or pre­texts to tran­scend and con­form a so­cial pic­ture seen from a crit­i­cal view.

Her grad­u­a­tion the­sis in the Higher Art In­sti­tute (ISA), made at the Wifredo Lam Con­tem­po­rary Art Cen­ter (1996), had as its ti­tle Al fi­nal de la calle (At the End of the Street). The six groups of pieces ex­hib­ited were in­stal­la­tions in which Yamilys al­ready re­hearsed her personal ex­er­cise in en­grav­ing sug­gest­ing com­ments based on the in­ter­pre­ta­tions of the street names (the ti­tles of the works) an­i­mat­ing the com­po­si­tion. So, in Cu­a­tro Caminos (Four Paths, 1995), with four en­grav­ings, each of the di­rec­tions was marked—in the pieces—by the tracks of car tires which, ex­tended on the wall, sim­u­lated in­fi­nite routes. In this case, it was an in­cur­sion into ex­is­ten­tial top­ics, show­ing four dif­fer­ent op­tions of as­sum­ing life: al­co­holism as eva­sion, iso­la­tion, eco­nomic hope or de­spair, and sur­ren­der­ing to the in­flu­ences of deca­dence and death.

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