Of "an act of poetic justice," Dr. Miguel Barnet described the delivery of the 2019 National Prize of Plastic Arts to Lesbia Vent Dumois (Cruces, 1932), which took place in an emotional ceremony held this Saturday at the National Museum of Fine Arts with the assistance of prominent personalities, including the Minister of Culture Alpidio Alonso Grau.
“Lesbia's visual work, by itself, occupies a prominent place in the Cuban plastic arts for a while (…) If we were guided by critics, her work could be inscribed in a kind of new figuration that in Latin America and, of course in our country, sat in the 70s”.
Pointed out the Honorary President of the Union of Writers and Artists of Cuba, when pronouncing the award speech, in which he also stressed the value of Vent Dumois as a curator, her humility and a capacity for delivery that has led her to assume the important tasks assigned to her at Casa de las Américas, where she worked for four decades, and at UNEAC, where she is still in charge of the Association of Plastic Artists.
Visibly excited, addressing the numerous artists, curators and art critics gathered there, the renowned painter and engraver said:
“I have thought a lot what I was going to say here today. Nothing more than a single word: thank you. Thanks to friends, acquaintances; to the dear companions, whom I had never seen and have called me; to those who have met me in the street and greet me and say I saw you, I saw you in this or that program; because the media have been very kind in this case.
Because when you receive something you don't expect, I think you enjoy it more. And you can be sure that I am enjoying it very much, in the company of all of you,” she concluded.
In addition to the beautiful diploma conceived for the occasion by Ernesto Rancaño, the artist received flowers and gifts from colleagues and institutions, including that of the Hermanos Saíz Association, a youth organization that placed her among the 31 nominations for the award, annually awarded since 1994 by the National Council of the Plastic Arts and that, for the second time in its history, is conferred on a woman.
The ceremony, which was also attended by Luis Morlotte Rivas, president of the UNEAC; Kenelma Carvajal Pérez, Vice Minister of Culture; Abel Prieto Jiménez, president of Casa de las Américas; Rafael González Muñoz, president of the AHS and Norma Rodríguez Derivet, president of the CNAP, among other officials, concluded with the performances of the troubadour Eduardo Sosa and the Jazz Band directed by maestro Joaquín Betancourt, National Music Award 2019.
As part of the high recognition endowment, Vent Dumois will hold a personal exhibition at the National Museum of Fine Arts, before the end of the current year.