Havana, Cuba

VII Bienal de La Habana

Various Venues

Since its inception in 1983, the Bienal de La Habana has tenaciously promoted itself as an alternative biennial—less cookie-cutter-commercial and more genuinely representative of the art of the developing world. And yet as Cuba’s economic situation has changed—dramatically even in the three years since the last biennial—so have the aspirations of Cuban artists and the ambitions of the exhibition’s curators. The discreet charms (and harms) of globalization, it seems, are hard to resist. The theme of the seventh installment, “Más ma uno del otro” (“Closer to the other”), was designed to allow “a reflection on communication and dialogue among human beings,” a proposition that suggests a fuzzily defined conceptual zone between old-fashioned liberal humanism and information-age “communicative action.” In fact, this biennial dealt equally with the poetics of miscommunication, partly because of

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