Los Carpinteros

Facts

Birth place
Marco Antonio Castillo Valdes: 1971 in Havana, Cuba

Dagoberto Rodríguez Sánchez: 1969 in Havana, Cuba
Lives in
Madrid and Havana
Works with
Sculpture, drawing and mixed media

Collective founded in 1992 in Havana, Cuba. Even though their name translates as "the carpenters", Los Carpinteros' artistic practice by far exceeds the realm of craft. Verging between architecture and conceptual art, large-scale sculpture and delicate water colours, the work of the Cuban collective works blends the formalist with the political and the serious with the absurd.

Los Carpinteros merge different architectures or political symbols into each other, so that something new can emerge – a different meaning, a third way of seeing things. They combine a prototypical US barbeque grill with the national emblem of Cuba, the communist star, to create a twisted, funny, yet highly politically charged hybrid. Or they build cupboards in the form of Havana's high rises like the former Sovjet embassy. "Creation," Los Carpinteros once said in an interview, "is an allergic reaction to reality".