Tate Modern, London - The EY Exhibition
September 14, 2016 - January 8, 2017
Discover one of the most notable Cuban artists of the twentieth century at this major retrospective.
Born in Cuba of mixed heritage, Wifredo Lam (1902 – 1982) pursued a successful artistic career within avant-garde circles on both sides of the Atlantic, and was closely associated with twentieth-century artistic and literary icons such as Pablo Picasso, André Breton, Aimé Césaire, Lucio Fontana and Asger Jorn. His work poetically addresses themes of social injustice, nature and spirituality, and was greeted internationally with both consternation and acclaim.
A witness to twentieth-century political upheaval throughout his long career – including the Spanish Civil War and the evacuation of artists and intellectuals from France with the onset of World War II – Lam defined a new and unique way of painting for a post-colonial world. Lam’s work now brings a historical perspective to contemporary issues.
This exhibition celebrates Lam’s life and work and confirms his place at the centre of global modernism.
Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía
April 6 - August 15, 2016
A pioneer of cross-cultural painting that infused Western modernism and African and Caribbean symbolism, Wifredo Lam (Sagua La Grande, 1902 – Paris, 1982) was in touch with every avant-garde movement at the time, whilst also addressing world problems. His deeply committed work, exploring the diversity of expression and mediums, from painting to drawing, prints and ceramics, took on the same struggle as his friend Aimé Césaire: “to paint the drama of his country, the cause and the spirit of the blacks.” From an early age, Lam became aware of the issue of race and its social and political implications in Cuba, Europe and later in the USA. He was associated with divergent national, social and culture spheres, but always maintained his distance and avoided falling into roles or the impact of identity imposed upon him, with good intentions, by friends and admirers. Lam invented his own unique and original artistic language to defend the dignity of life and freedom.
The exhibition revolves around the genesis of his work, the diverse stages and conditions of reception and the progressive integration of a body of work that was painstakingly put together in Spain, Paris, Marseille and Cuba. It traces the artist’s unique career by way of almost two hundred and fifty works – paintings, drawings, etchings, prints, ceramics - and is completed with over three hundred documents – letters, photographs, magazines and books. This broad range of material casts light upon his work and thought, zooming in on the years he spent in Spain (1923–1938), the remarkable prints from the 1960s and 1970s and his collaborations with eminent writers of his time, in addition to the major works he produced in his native Cuba (1940–1950); In short, it depicts a committed life inside a turbulent century.
September 30, 2015 - February 15, 2016
For the first time, the Centre Pompidou is devoting a retrospective to the work of Wifredo Lam, with a circuit of nearly 300 works – paintings, drawings, engravings and ceramics – enriched with archives, documents and photographs that illustrate a committed approach in a century full of radical change. Lam's work occupies a singular and paradoxical position in 20th century art. It reflects the diverse movements of forms and ideas in the context of avant-gardes, exchanges and cultural movements – both within themselves and across national borders – that embodied the "broader modernism" described by Andreas Huyssen, but in a different way from the question of globalisation that emerged in the 1990s, and long before it.
Leiris & Co.: Picasso, Masson, Miro, Giacometti, Lam, Bacon...
Centre Pompidou - Metz
April 3 to September 14, 2015
At the crossroads of art, literature and ethnography, this exhibition dedicated to Michel Leiris (1901-1990) is the first of its kind. As a prominent 20th century intellectual, though relatively unknown, Leiris was both a poet and an autobiographical writer, as well as a professional ethnographer and very close friend of many great artists and writers of his times.
Encompassing nearly 350 works, including many masterpieces by his closest artist friends (Miró, Masson, Giacometti, Picasso, Bacon…), African and Caribbean artefacts and works of art, a wide array of manuscripts, books, films and music, this exhibition aims at shedding light upon Michel Leiris' multi-faceted character, his passions and commitments. It equally sets out to highlight the innovative aspect of his oeuvre and the pertinence of his ideas, which, at a time of globalisation and post-colonial studies, have made him an essential contemporary reference.
Wifredo Lam: Imagining New Worlds
McMullen Museum Boston College
August 30 to December 14, 2014
Presenting more than forty paintings and a wide selection of works on paper by Wifredo Lam (1902–82), this retrospective is the first to examine the artist as a global figure whose work blurred boundaries among established artistic movements of the twentieth century.