Hamlet Lavastida’s sophisticated artistic proposal focuses on the field of history, ideology and collective memory. Curated by Janet Batet, Lavastida is interested in the diagnosis and reconstruction of a particular iconographic memory associated with the ideological notion of "prophylaxis" wielded by the Cuban Revolution of 1959 as an indoctrination tool aimed at the conversion of the individual in the long awaited archetype of the “New Man”.
By the term "prophylactic work" is known in Cuba the ideological prevention, and educational guidance designed to ensure the full integration of the individual into the realm of the Socialist construction project.
Circumscribed to the period 1960-1990, this body of work, a sort of poststructuralist scrutiny, centers on the review of official documents and images directly associated with the imagery of prevention, orientation, and coercion.
The logic behind representation in Cuba during this period is heir to Constructivist aesthetic that, taken over by the Soviet Revolution as a major ideological weapon, has its epitome in the propaganda poster. Tackled from the Post-communist era, these cutting-edge anthropological works dig into an obsolete yet fascinating aesthetic for many idealized from nostalgia and others entirely strange.
Gallery Project Room: Gian Paolo Minelli, Caseros Jail The Càrcel (Jail) de Caseros in the heart of Buenos Aires was shut down in the year 2000 to be demolished later in 2007. Minelli visited the decaying prison building several times between 2000 and 2002 toachieve the photographs for his “Caseros Jail Photo Series”, whenever he received official permission to do so. His pictures in strong colors show the former site of atrocities without the least touch of voyeurism. On the contrary: the poetic power of broken glass tiles or concrete walls plastered with faded pictures of women's heads imparts a faint sense of hope despite the knowledge of suffering and pain. "I worked like an archaeologist searching for traces of freedom," Gian Paolo Minelli says, "the freedom of the soul, to dignify the suffering / absent lives through poetic images”. On the one hand, the artist searches for geometric relationships in the structure of the building and, on the other hand, in the human body with its capacity for perception and movement. It reveals and unveils the limit of freedom recovered by every individual through his instinct of preservation, hidden in the soul even in such urging situations.