The conceptual platform of the XIII Biennial of Havana, under the theme "The construction of the possible", proposes to be a scenario for the exchange of ideas that prioritize the need for balance between society, culture and nature. The event is conceived as a space for artistic interventions based on the concept of art as a live event or a continuous experience, which extends beyond the traditional notions of authorship and aesthetic autonomy. The XIII Biennial of Havana places special emphasis on projects that involve multiple interdisciplinary strategies, and that transmit the transforming power of artistic creation through the development of new social and symbolic relationships. For the first time, the Havana Biennial will also take place in other Cuban cities, including Matanzas.
As a guest artist at the XIII Biennial of Havana, María Magdalena Campos-Pons is the founder and artistic director of the Ríos intermitentes project, an exhibition concept based on the idea of transformation and the curative quality of traditional cultures in the native region of Matanzas. Campos-Pons has a deep understanding of the rich cultural heritage of Matanzas and is aware of how memory, trauma and erasures can only be resolved through healing. Healing here is conceived as a transcendental force, and also as a transforming gesture.
With Ríos intermitentes, Campos-Pons seeks to revitalize and heal the city through artistic gestures that will revive forgotten traditions and places, creating artistic circuits that empower the community and help to renew it with a sense of cultural pride. In the selection of participating local and international artists, the accent has been placed on social actions that are expected to have a long-term impact in the city of Matanzas. Campos-Pons is interested in looking at the city of Matanzas with renewed eyes, considering its traditions and revitalizing the artistic scene through a unique exhibition platform, where international and local artists will converge.
With Campos-Pons as artistic director and coordinator of events, Ríos intermitentes insists fundamentally on the importance of revitalizing teamwork and collaboration with the institutions of the province of Matanzas, paying attention to the unification of the existing efforts and ideas in the cultural community Ríos intermitentes will be executed with the support of the Biennial of Havana and the Wifredo Lam Center, the Provincial Directorate of Culture, the Provincial Council of Plastic Arts and a curatorial team appointed by Campos-Pons, which includes Octavio Zaya, Sala M Hassan and Selene Wundt.
Ríos intermitentes was conceived as an integral artistic intervention that aims to build a vibrant city, taking into account its extraordinary cultural history, the geography of Matanzas and the tremendous traditions and heritage of the city. Ultimately, the project will immerse the city and its citizens in a fresh and curative stream of art and interventions that will promote urban renewal and revive the cultural role of Matanzas seen and rediscovered by its citizens and visitors.