Exhibition pavillion E
« La ruta migratoria »
Javier Balmaseda is Cuban artist. He studied at the Advance Institute for Art of Havana where he acquired the bases of various forms of plastic expressions. According to him, the meaning of art cannot be understood without his cultural and social production context.
In his works, Balmaseda creates contemporary artwork based on his personal experiences in which he reflects on the relationship between life and art. In 2013, his artwork “Fixed in contemporaneity” was exhibited during the 55thBiennale of Venice under the Andorran flag and in 2014 at Art Elysées with baudoin lebon gallery. This installation consists of 10 horses whose legs cuts are fixed on jacks and other automotive elements. Through a metaphor, the artist question our current society overwhelmed by deculturation.
His new project named La ruta migratoria is a massive artwork composed by 3000 ceramic pieces, which relates to Javier Balmaseda personal life as well as the sociological, economical and climate issues. In his cherish homeland Cuba, Balmaseda explains that the path between the cities of Trinidad and Cienfuegos are each spring season invaded by thousands of crabs coming from the Caribbean and swarming up towards the beach to bread. This unexpected scene given by Mother Nature each year fascinates the artist, who materializes this image into a powerful sculptural artwork.
Through this metaphor, Javier Balmaseda highlights a contemporary phenomenon where migratory fluxes transform places and landscapes. While crabs are solely driven by biological issue, for human beings, emigration is the only way to survive. Violence of wars, stakes of power, domination, pushed millions of people to run away.
“I have experienced that, I have suffered that. I don’t want to talk about my personal experience, but a universal and timeless issue. Emigration has always existed. Beyond focusing only on the current migrants issues affecting migrants, I try to explore a phenomenon deeply rooted in the human condition.”
At the time of exile tragedy, wars backlash as well as environmental issues, Balmaseda’s work reveals remarkably our contemporary matters.