Curated by Natalia Viera Salgado
Artists: Sofía Gallisá, Lionel Cruet, Karlo Andrei Ibarra, Christopher Gregory, Natalia Lassalle-Morillo, Erika P. Rodríguez, and Edra Soto
Location: Pfizer Building, 630 Flushing Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11206
Opening reception: April 19, 2018, 6-9 pm
Exhibition dates: April 19-May 4, 2018
To schedule an appointment to view the exhibition, please contact Natalia Viera Salgado at
MA Curatorial Practice is pleased to present Isla Imaginaria, an exhibition featuring works by Sofía Gallisá, Lionel Cruet, Karlo Andrei Ibarra, Christopher Gregory, Natalia Lassalle-Morillo, Erika P. Rodríguez, and Edra Soto.
Isla Imaginaria explores notions of paradise and landscape in the Caribbean island of Puerto Rico. Based on Edouard Glissant’s ‘Poetics of Relation’, Isla Imaginaria offers a pathway to reflect on a shared space or a world solidarity. What does it mean to inhabit what Édouard Glissant defines as a commonplace open to the entanglement of worldwide relations? This commonplace could be defined as space for reverberation, what makes us relate to each other. For Glissant, the Caribbean sea “has always been a place of encounter and connivance.” It is a space of encounters and departures where cultures blend, it is always in flux. Through the tourism gaze, Caribbean islands are often referred as tropical paradises, sanctuary spaces, and places to escape. But they are also places full of contradiction where invisible forces come and go, and aspiring utopian futures are all part of an imaginary. But imaginary for whom and how do we share such imaginary? For centuries, disasters have exposed the unstable, unequal realities, the lack of self-determination that the islanders of Puerto Rico face. What does it mean to belong in a place like this? Specifically in the context of the Caribbean tropics today. Or what does it mean “to have the right for opacity” in a Puerto Rican context? To inhabit this commonplace means to share this space of reverberation, what makes us relate to each other. Opaque has nothing to do with blindness or obscure, it means that we embrace this chaos-monde, a participatory and open-source system that opens up before us. It is also that which cannot be reduced. It is where we go to find ourselves, we come to the conclusion that we inhabit an opacity that does not make us less of a person. It is not a Totalitarian mentality but a world mentality, it is about changing the frame of mind and becoming universal. Like the sea it is where histories and cultures meet.This exhibition questions whether we can share such imaginary of uncertainty, but also reflects on the colonial structure that has been imposed by the U.S government which tries to separate this Caribbean Island from the rest of the Archipelago.
Image: Christopher Gregory, Yabucoa Tennis Club, 2017, chromogenic print. Image courtesy of the artist; on view at Isla imaginaria, curated by Natalia Viera Salgado.