Cuban and Caribbean Studies Institute

Tulane University

Victoria Montoro Zamorano Exhibit - "La Habana: In Spite of..."

October 3rd, 2009 - November 4th, 2009

Location
Octavia Art Gallery
4532 Magazine Street
New Orleans, LA

Octavia Art Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Victoria Montoro Zamorano – the first ever in the city for the artist – October 3 through November 4, 2009. A reception with the artist will be held at Octavia Art Gallery during Art For Arts’ Sake on Saturday, October 3rd from 6-9 PM.

For Victoria Montoro Zamorano, the art of seeing consists not in actively looking for the striking or unusual, but in being ever open and receptive to see the world with new eyes. This unguarded, spontaneous approach gives her images a quality of abstract realism that turns undulating sand dunes into a woman’s prone body, and equally captures the emotional content of a crumbling façade or an old woman’s face.

Zamorano left Havana in 1961, when she was 12 years old. In May 2008, she returned for the first time, a trip she calls “the most important” of her life. Zamorano says, “I was a bit scared, being the daughter of a former political prisoner.” It was a time for Victoria to reconcile her own memories, from those invented ones, or imagined ones acquired through the years from her parents and family members. While on the 5-day journey, Zamorano captured images – and memories – that became the stunning exhibit showcased at Octavia Art Gallery.

This body of work displays how the buildings on the Malecon in Havana have survived in spite of time and circumstances, political and economical. They stand, proudly facing the sea like a row of Grand Dames, waiting to be restored to their former glory. One piece in the exhibition uncovers this glory. Victoria’s cousin, Cuban painter Humberto Calzada, has tried to reconstruct his visual past by painting a partial restoration over one of Victoria’s photographs on canvas, leaving behind part of the ruin as a witness to the tragedy that has occurred.

The exhibit of 22 photographs, in both color and black and white, runs through November 4, 2009.

octavia | art gallery
4532 Magazine Street, New Orleans, Louisiana 70115
504-309-4249

Photo courtesy of the artist.

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