The Farber Foundation has announced the jurors for the first Cuban Art Awards. This fall, a panel of eight will select the Cuban Artist of the Year and Young Cuban Artist of the Year.
The jurors will select the winners from a list assembled by a group of nominators—curators, critics, and scholars in Cuba and overseas—who are working anonymously. A short list of their highest-ranked finalists will be presented to the jurors later this year. The awards will be announced in January 2015.
The Cuban Artist of the Year award carries a cash prize of $10,000, The cash prize for Young Cuban Artist of the Year is $3,000.
For Howard Farber, director of the Farber Foundation, the timing for the awards couldn’t be better. “2014 is already turning out to be a crucial year for Cuban artists globally,” he explained, “with more participation in international group shows, solo exhibitions, artist residencies, and other projects. With the Cuban Art Awards we’re looking to enhance that momentum. It’s a way of spotlighting not only the winning artists but the entire field of Cuban contemporary art.”
Farber had warm praise for the nominators and jurors. “We’re fortunate to be working with dedicated professionals who share a profound appreciation for Cuban art, and who see the value in the broader recognition that the Cuban Art Awards will bring.”
The Cuban Art Awards are open to artists living on the island and elsewhere. In the same vein, the jurors are based in Cuba and abroad. Jurors for the 2015 Cuban Art Awards are:
Caridad Blanco de la Cruz, curator, art critic, and researcher who is currently a specialist at the Centro de Desarrollo de las Artes Visuales (Center for Development of the Visual Arts) in Havana.
Elvia Rosa Castro Martín, art critic, curator, independent editor, and adjunct professor of art history at the University of Havana.
Howard Farber, director of the Farber Foundation and publisher of Cuban Art News, who has been collecting Cuban contemporary art since 2001.
Alejandro de la Fuente, director of the Afro-Latin American Research Institute at Harvard University and a curator of art exhibitions focusing on issues of race in Cuba.
Corina Matamoros Tuma, art historian, author, and curator at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Havana, where she has promoted the collecting of contemporary art.
Ron Pizzuti, founder of the Pizzuti Collection, a museum of contemporary art in Columbus, Ohio, who has been traveling to Cuba and collecting Cuban contemporary art for the past five years.
Ben Rodriguez-Cubeñas, program director for the New York City Pivotal Place program of the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, and co-founder and chair of the Cuban Artists Fund.
Rachel Weiss, educator, curator, and author of books on Cuban and Latin American art, currently professor of arts administration and policy at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
For more detailed biographies of the jurors, see the press release on the Farber Foundation website.