Magnan Metz is pleased to present the first solo show at the gallery for Carlos Quintana. The exhibition features works on paper, paintings on canvas and mirrors as well as an installation of 100 ceramic skulls.
Known for his irrepressible energy, Quintana’s new works are full of metaphoric gestures that are simultaneously seductive and disquieting. Blending Cuban and Afro-Caribbean Santeria religious iconography, Quintana presents us with a dream-like universe of vivid colors and rich textures from which powerful yet poetic figures emerge.
Francois Vallee in his essay Carlos Quintana, on truth in painting explains, “Quintana organizes the struggle in the interior of his canvases, that he is one of the few contemporary artists that can manage to embrace in them the light of the timeless, the moving reflections of universal atavistic culture: Europe, Latin-America, the Caribbean, Asia, Africa are inscribed in his artworks filled with shapes but also and above all the core of their spiritualties… His artistic endeavor resembles that of the experimental mystic of returning to the origins, to the germs of creation, reestablishing a magical relation with the shapes and colors, recovering the charm of the painting which give shape to the secret essence of things, to find again the purpose of the art as the only force of resistance in a society, ours, where it is assimilated as an ordinary product of consumption…”
He continues, “Quintana paints or draws to become Seer, to bespell, to invoke spirits to heal, and foretell. Quintana whose works not only constitute an attempt to represent, instead of theology in the form of images and sculptures, and act of faith. Art is religion, and religion is art. His figures, his characters, his sculptures are not simple imitations of nature, but a graphic expression of thought, they are not objects, they acquire corporeity, the corporeity of the spiritual, of the sacred. They are an embodiment. The characters which seem to be untouchable idols, divinities who occupy a place hierarchically assigned in a ceremony. “ Carlos Quintana was born in Havana, Cuba in 1966 and studied painting at The Academy of San Alejandro and the Institute of Design in Havana, Cuba. Quintana has exhibited international and is in both public and private collections including Havana, Beijing, Miami, New York and Europe. He currently lives and works in Havana.