Modern and Contemporary Photography: Becoming Image– Curated by José Antonio Navarrete
An image can be a mental representation or a physical one. An idea or a concrete fragment of existence. A conception or a visible part of the material world. Also, an image can be both in every relationship described above.
This year, PINTA Photography proposes an exploration of the process whereby an image transits from the mind to reality, taking into account photographies that conserve, in their entity, the traces of the thoughts behind them or, in other words, photographies that become evident rational and visual products. Not positioned as a conceptual exhibition in the strict sense, but far from the comprehension of photography as a compulsive register of reality, this section of PINTA intends to illuminate some ways photography works to introduce poetics into representations.
José Antonio Navarrete is an independent researcher and curator of visual culture and arts based in Miami, Florida. He was curator of photography at Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Havana from 1982 to 1888. After being the general curator of Encuentro de fotografía latinoamericana, Caracas, 1993, Navarrete also worked as an adviser to the Division of Painting and Sculpture of the Museo de Bellas Artes, Caracas, between 1995 and 1997.
From 2003 to 2004, he was in charge of the Division of Curatorship, Research, Education and Library at the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Caracas Sofía Imber. During 1997–2006, he was the editor of the magazine Extracámara, mainly devoted to Venezuelan and Latin American photography. From 2012 to 2014, as part of an international academic team, he developed research on the subject “Intellectual Networks: Art and Politics in Latin America,” included in the Connecting Art Histories program supported by the JP Getty Foundation. He currently holds the curatorial program at ArtMedia Gallery in Miami.
He was the curator of seminal exhibitions at the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, Havana, including La Fotografía en Cuba Exposición Retrospectiva, 1983–84, and La Vanguardia: Surgimiento del arte moderno en Cuba, 1988–89. In Venezuela, he curated exhibitions including Romper los márgenes, Museo Alejandro Otero, Caracas, 1993; La mirada múltiple de Tito Caula, Galería de Arte Nacional, Caracas, 1995; Arte en libertad: Salón 1958, Museo Alejandro Otero, Caracas, 1998; and Leo Matiz, el sentido de lo moderno, Galería Fundación Previsora, Caracas, 2007. Among his most recent curatorships are En el lugar de lo dicho: Exploraciones en el archivo discursivo de la fotografía, Centro de Fotografía and Museo Nacional de Artes Visuales, Montevideo, Uruguay, 2014, PINTA Photography, Miami, 2015 and 2016, and Special Rooms at Buenos Aires Photo, 2016.
He has contributed texts to numerous magazines, catalog, academic publications and newspapers in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Ecuador, Spain, the United States, Guatemala, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Uruguay. Among his several books he has published Ensayos desleales sobre fotografía, EdicionesEnFoco, Merida, Venezuela, 1995, and Fotografiando en América Latina: Ensayos de crítica histórica, Fundación para la Cultura Urbana, Caracas, 2009. Among his most important recent publications are “Respondiendo una encuesta imaginada” in Redes intelectuales: Arte y política en América Latina, Universidad de los Andes, Bogota, 2015; and …Of the Americas, Lehigh University Art Galleries, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, 2016.