Miami based Cuban artist Maria Martinez-Cañas presents her fifth solo show at Julie Saul. Martinez-Cañas left Cuba at three months of age and when talking to Donald Kuspit about her parents and their collective displacement she states, “My memories were in reality their memories.” It is this concept of memories and re-interpreted memories that that have been so dominent in her work over the past two decades as she has often used the photographic process to capture those things emphemeral, overlooked, and often discarded. In recent years she has explored the concepts of personal intimacy with those of familiar or collective experience. In her series Duplicty as Identity of 2008-9 Martinez-Cañas superimposed a photo of her father at age 40 with one of herself in the same pose at exactly the same age. Over a series of prints, the viewer sees a metamorophosis occur where her father slowly disappears and Martinez-Cañas emerges.
Her current show Photo Paintings is a series of mixed media works utilizing collage and painting in a similar vein, however rather than a genetic transformation, Martinez-Cañas opts for artistic fragments of others transformed into her own personal identity as an artist. Using pieces or references to works by artists that have influenced her development such as Loise Bourgeois, Eadweard Muybridge, and Giorgio Morandi, Martinez-Cañas emerges as an artist whose memory is now also comprised of their memories.
Maria Martinez-Cañas Photo Paintings 2012 September 6 – October 20 at Julie Saul
Photos: Sujin Lee