University of Pittsburgh
March 7, 2011

Queloides Exhibition to Be Featured in New York City Gallery As Part of Cuban Arts Festival

is cocurated by Pitt professor Alejandro de la Fuente and cosponsored by Pitt’s Center for Latin American Studies
Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—The Cuban art exhibition Queloides: Race and Racism in Cuban Contemporary Art, which just ended a very successful run at the Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh, will be exhibited at The 8th Floor, a private art gallery in New York City, beginning April 12. Cosponsored by the University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Latin American Studies (CLAS), the New York City exhibition is free and open to the public and runs through July. 

Queloides, cocurated by Pitt professor Alejandro de la Fuente, addresses the debate about the persistence of racism in contemporary Cuba and throughout the world. While in New York, Queloides will be part of the Cuban arts and culture festival ¡Sí Cuba! 

While taking steps to eliminate inequality, the Cuban revolution suppressed discussions of race, claiming that discrimination had been forever eliminated from the island. After decades of being considered taboo, discussions about race and racism occur more openly in contemporary Cuba. In the early 1990s, artists, scholars, and writers in Cuba began to do the unthinkable: denounce the persistence of racial discrimination in Cuban socialist society. 

Queloides is the answer of a group of Cuban visual artists and intellectuals to these changing realities,” says de la Fuente, a University Center for International Studies (UCIS) research professor of history and Latin American Studies at Pitt. “Artists such as the ones showcased in Queloides have tried to articulate an answer to the deteriorating racial situation in Cuba. It is the protest of a generation that grew up in a mostly egalitarian society and that then witnessed how that society collapsed in front of their eyes. 

“Since its conception, the exhibition has been a product of collaboration between Cuban artists and intellectuals and American institutions, such as Pitt’s CLAS and the Mattress Factory museum,” adds de la Fuente. 

Queloides: Race and Racism in Cuban Contemporary Art has been exhibited at the Centro de Cultura Contemporánea Wifredo Lam (Havana, April 16-May 31, 2010) and at the Mattress Factory museum, (Pittsburgh, Oct. 15, 2010-Feb. 27, 2011).

Funders for the exhibition include the Christopher Reynolds Foundation Inc., the Atlantic Philanthropies, the Ford Foundation, the Lambent Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pennsylvania Humanities Council, The Pittsburgh Foundation, and Pitt’s Central Research Development Fund, CLAS, UCIS, Humanities Center, World History Center, and Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences. 

From March to June, 14 New York institutions are convening to celebrate the rich artistic vitality of Cuba by presenting the ¡Sí Cuba! festival, a showcase for the diversity of Cuban culture from the traditional to the modern. For the complete lineup of ¡Sí Cuba! festival events, visit 

The 8th Floor Gallery is located at 17 West 17th St., New York City. For additional information on Queloides, visit

Pitt’s Center for Latin American Studies is part of the University Center for International Studies. 




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