Wilfredo Prieto’s new work, Sin título (alfombra roja) (Untitled [Red Carpet]), 2007, is his second created specifically for the space of the Galería Nogueras Blanchard, following Biblioteca Blanca (White Bookcase), 2004. Like the earlier work by the Cuban artist, this installation is formally severe, apparently consisting only of a long red carpet unfurled across the length of the space. But looking at the edge of the rug, the viewer can easily see that under it there is a great deal of dust, which gathered in the gallery while it was closed for the summer. Though many viewers—myself included—were hesitant to step on the carpet, and even more hesitant to boldly lift it up, everyone knew that the piece’s trick lay there, on its underside.
The intervention, quite simply, entails a powerful metaphorical density. First, and most obviously, the red carpet—supreme symbol of power—is portrayed
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