12th Havana Biennial now underway in the Cuban capital
The 12th Havana Biennial is underway in the Cuban capital. One of the attractions this year is an ice rink designed by New York artist Duke Riley, who meant it as an artistic representation of the thaw in United States-Cuba relations.
Riley built the ice rink on the city’s famous Malecon esplanade and brought with him some 200 pairs of ice skates for Cubans to take a spin on the synthetic ice under the blazing Caribbean sun. Riley says the project was inspired by the historic easing of tensions between the US. and Cuba. The two Cold War foes have of late looked to restore diplomatic ties after more than 50 years of hostility.
Duke Riley, New York artist: “I think that as the two countries, relations, there will be a lot more cross cultural exchange. Often times, with the United States that can be both positive and negative and there will be some things that will probably have a lot of impact.”
The Havana Biennial is held in the Cuban capital every two years and this year’s exhibit will bring together more than 200 artists from over 40 countries under the theme, “Between the Idea and the Experience”.
The Biennial, which runs through June 22, will feature 120 individual projects and scores of collections in one of the biggest modern art festivals in Cuba.