What My Mother Told Me… The Art of Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons
Harvey B. Grantt Center for African-American Arts and Culture
Charlotte, North Carolina
January 28, 2011 – June 19, 2011
María Magdalena Campos-Pons, a woman, an expatriate, and a Cuban, makes art about identity and memory. Like all good art that begins in the personal, her work echoes the lives of African descendants rooted in Cuba, and of legions of fellow travelers from around the world at the turn of the 21st century. Born in Cuba of Nigerian ancestry, Campos-Pons’ work of the last 20 years covers an extended range of visual language investigations. It emerges from the early 1980s focus on painting and the discussion of sexuality in the crossroads of Cuban mixed cultural heritage to incisive questioning, critique and insertion of the black body in the contemporary narratives of the present. Installation art, performative photography and cultural activism define the core of Campos-Pons’ practice of the last two decades.