Jack Shadbolt: Works from the Collection
Judy Radul: World Rehearsal Court - Online Catalogue

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  1. ss6. las plantas medicinales.2.jpg

    Juan Carlos Alom, Las plantas medicinales florecen de nuevo, 2012.
    gelatin silver print, 48.7 x 47.7 cm.
    Courtesy of the artist.

The Spaces Between

Contemporary Art from Havana

January 10-April 13, 2014

[ return to show description ]

Cora Li-Leger from South Surrey at 12:27 pm Friday, April 11, 2014

Thank you Keith and Tonel for providing this glimpse of a world that reflects back to us.

Caroline from UK at 2:23 pm Saturday, April 5, 2014

Not sure about this as "art" - perhaps more English translations would have helped ? !

Henry Tsang at 1:30 pm Saturday, April 5, 2014

Thanks! Engaged works, engaging exhibition! Learned a lot.

Eli at 12:52 pm Saturday, April 5, 2014

Why is the person eating and licking the cactus?

J at 10:23 am Friday, April 4, 2014

Just...my life is over.

Ros from Vancouver at 4:09 pm Sunday, March 30, 2014

The saddest part of this exhibition for me was to learn that 70% of the arable land is not being used. What a shameful policy this is. Surely, this fertile space could be used to enhance the standard and quality life of all Cubans without causing a threat to the socialist philosophy of the government.

Fidel at 3:43 pm Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Cant believe this cost money....

Aida at 1:41 pm Wednesday, March 26, 2014

[ In reply to Jim Moriarty at 1:24 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014 ] Nah

Someone at 1:30 pm Wednesday, March 26, 2014

[ In reply to Someone at 3:41 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014 ] shut up

Joel Mara from Canada at 1:48 pm Sunday, March 23, 2014

I liked the piece about the artists studio. I felt like I had lived there or been there for a long time. The cinematography was intimate and contemplative.

Marlene Lewis from Victoria at 2:42 pm Saturday, March 22, 2014

I loved this show. I visited Cuba a few years ago and so was really interested in what this art exhibition would consist of. In Cuba I didn't have access to freedom of artistic expression so I wondered if it would be present here. My experience is that it is present. Thanks for bringing this exhibition of Cuban art together.

Christy from Surrey at 2:34 pm Saturday, March 22, 2014

I have been exhileratingly "streamed" by the images of the artists arranged by the curators and described by the tour conversation and am immensely thankful for the opportunity to have been so!

esteban from Surrey at 2:29 pm Saturday, March 22, 2014

Friends who have visited have been restricted to Havana and more urban touristy environs, while those who have gone beyond, and experienced the limitations of trying to travel more, reflect the bureaucratic malaise endemically depicted by this display. The degree of sadness prevalent in comments and video representations makes me want to grab the Castro's and the US government and give them a common shake; for the loss to humanity by the inability to both create a system productive and representative of Cuban peoples hopes and dreams, along with the unwillingness of US policies to see how a better treatment of Cuba and trade with Cuba could enhance change in the Cuban governmental structure more quickly, reinforces the degree of sadness so pervasive in virtually all of the artistic representations. They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results; that definition is present in spades both in the displays, and in US and Cuban policies reaffirming the despair which permeates much of what is here. A friend said a Cuban referred to her country as being a "beautiful prison." Yes, that can be seen.

Someone at 3:41 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014


Jade from Scottland at 1:57 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014

If I had 365 pairs of socks I could have a fresh pair every day....and a special pair for here

cathy from a local gal at 1:50 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014

Personally I thought the exhibit was very good. One tends to see the nice side of Cuba over and over again, the warm beaches, the colorful cities, but we, frequently neglect to show the difficulties of the people who live in Cuba on a day to day basis. I particularly liked the video of the camera attached to the carry-on that was rattling down the street. The real deal. My friend, like the lithographs, especially the 'plaza' and I liked the 'exita'. I also enjoyed the mixed media that was used, video, lithographs, inkjets and audio. The artist presented a variety of media, which for me as the viewer I find really engaging. The psychophonia made me stop and listen for a while.

george stanly from alberta at 1:35 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014

i think dogs rock

Jim Moriarty at 1:24 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014

Didya miss me?

Anastasia from Russia at 1:05 pm Thursday, March 20, 2014

This exhibit "The spaces between" is very unusual in many way. I almost felt like i have gone to Cuba for a day and experienced the issues that the country is going through. The work varies from interesting and unexpected to worrying and at some point even disturbing. Looking at the reality of Cuban society made me think of the some own internal worries, which was pretty emotional. Overall i enjoyed the exhibit very much, and i must say it is worth coming back to.

Cristina from Vancouver at 3:19 pm Wednesday, March 19, 2014

What an interesting and unusual exhibit (The Spaces Between). It was a window into Cuban life and the various issues in Cuba slowly started to become more clear as I strolled around the gallery. Some of the images are shocking (particularly the cactus video), which leave you with questions, but I think the idea is to push the viewer to try and understand the complications in society that Cubans face on a daily basis. Things such as health care, religion, agriculture, and definitely politics are running under the surface of each piece of work. It was a very interesting experience and I am very thankful for the Belkin's generosity in sharing it openly with the public.

LV+T from old world at 1:11 pm Saturday, March 15, 2014

que viva Cuba! adios a la revoluccion...

Ken from Vancouver at 3:21 pm Thursday, March 13, 2014

The creativity of people in Socialist Cuba is nurtured from cradle to grave. From infantile circles, pioneer palaces, art schools and universities to Circles for the Golden Age! All free. Show talent and desire and off you go. This right to personal development is one of many rights Cubans have and our corporate media and so-called democratic government ignores. I visit Cuba frequently from one end to the other. We are "godparents" to the daughter of a Santiago artist and friends with several others. I have many Cuban works in my personal collection. My favorite here...Celia y Yunior. I like the politics and social commentary. Thanks to Tonel and Keith Wallace for this show.

Lewis Cho from Vancouver, BC` at 2:07 pm Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The art that struck me most was the psychophonics display. I thought that was an interesting concept and ought to try it sometime. I expected stuff to jump out at me but some of these unusual sounds in an empty classroom were subtle and occasional rumbling of whatever that caused it.

Daniel RJ Cha from Vancouver(Korea) at 1:28 pm Wednesday, March 12, 2014

If we can participate to touch or take photo with these creative photo, it will be more awesome. Some of arts are very creative and I could think about Cuba's culture. It was great

F Tassioulas from Vancouver at 2:42 pm Tuesday, March 11, 2014

The concept of psychophonics is intriguing. What happens to the spaces we use on a daily basis when we're not there? Beautiful, thought-provoking pieces and experiences here.

John Harris from Prince George BC at 11:17 am Wednesday, March 5, 2014

I enjoyed the social realism and looking at some of the materials. Been to Havana a few times so any representation of the city were nice to see.

N. Pirani from UBC at 1:16 pm Friday, February 28, 2014

Very cool! Would love to show this exhibition to my family and friends.

Ac at 1:46 pm Sunday, February 23, 2014

The phrase "would you like to buy my misery" really confronted the viewer and had me question what I was doing here. Was I simply consuming the pit falls of Cuban culture or trying to relate and learn from them?

Hans Smits from Edmonton, Alberta at 1:46 pm Saturday, February 22, 2014

I just spent 5 days in Havana just before Christmas, so I found this exhibition very interesting. I think it gave me a kind of eery feeling, in part because as a tourist in Havana you know you are somewhat sheltered from a fuller view and understanding of the precariousness and contradictions of everyday life, although you are aware that there is more to life in a city like Havana (or any other place as well where you are an outsider)...this is what I mean by eery, in that the exhibition made me wonder what I did not see but could only sense. I like the theme of "the spaces between"; certainly when in Havana you get a sense of world that is caught between unrequited dreams of revolution and what, at least the idea of the revolution still promises in terms of a better life in many people's imaginations. And on the other hand, the failure of the revolution to live up to those dreams, but also complicated by hopes for a post-revolutionary society but with some dread about what global capitalism portends for the lives of ordinary people...I really like the way this exhibition opens up these kinds of question in the "space' offered...

clayton davies from Iowa at 2:17 pm Thursday, February 20, 2014

i enjoyed this place.. was dope

Amy Antoniuk from Colorado at 2:16 pm Thursday, February 20, 2014

Absolutely fabulous

Monica H Jang at 4:34 pm Sunday, February 16, 2014


Olivia Jang at 4:33 pm Sunday, February 16, 2014

Love it. Would u like to buy my misery? this touches me very much. Would love to do my assignment at this gallery.

Anonymous at 4:24 pm Friday, February 14, 2014

For a documentary perspective on the ambitious national art schools project begun in the wake of the Revolution and recently revisited, see the 2011 film: "Unfinished Spaces."

L from UBC at 2:08 pm Saturday, February 8, 2014

it is very impressing. I like the "would you buy my misery" one. However, sometimes I feel that everyone can create similar exhibition like the exhibition shown here. Anyway, I love the atmosphere in the art gallery.

Sylvia Roberts from Simon Fraser University at 3:12 pm Friday, February 7, 2014

I really enjoyed the exhibition, particularly the video works and that many of the works showed life as lived in Cuba. Thank you!

tarek haji from ubc at 3:31 pm Wednesday, February 5, 2014

felt like going on a tropical holiday today. cold outside but muy caliente inside. muchos gracias.

Jessamine from Taiwan at 1:32 pm Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Great exhibition. Eduardo Gonzales' drawings showed really beautiful shading and detail, the "mentira, verdad"/ "exit, exito" pieces really reminded me of silver linings, and the "would you like to (care to) buy my misery?" exhibit was really compelling. This exhibition really sparked me curiosity about the political situation in Cuba, since a lot of the pieces had themes related to propaganda, the government, international/foreign relations. It was also sad and shocking to watch the video "The Golden Age" and hear two or three children's replies to the question "What do you want to be when you grow up" as "I want to be a foreigner."

Derek Armstrong from Surrey BC at 2:38 pm Saturday, February 1, 2014

i love it, I'll add the Cuban art to my essay as assignment for Micheal and Phill.

00 at 4:00 pm Thursday, January 30, 2014

This was a very compelling experience. Much to my surprise, the documentary-style art had a big POOOOOOOOP. I enjoyed the exhibit and would not like to see more in the future!

jjoyce temple from vancouver - artist at 11:37 am Thursday, January 30, 2014

excellent exhibition

Bobby from Montreal at 3:25 pm Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Nice! The girl making out with the cactus was my favorite.

very interesting. from China at 3:14 pm Wednesday, January 29, 2014

very interesting exhibit. i like it.

Jenny at 2:36 pm Thursday, January 23, 2014

Very interesting.

Cate and George at 1:59 pm Sunday, January 19, 2014

We have travelld to Cuba. there are many sides to this beautiful island. This/These are some of them. Very informative . thank you and the artists for sharing

****************************** at 11:38 am Thursday, January 16, 2014

all blacks at the white show

Tam at 4:53 pm Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Loved the videos in a row. Wonderfully selected. Became far too engrossed in the "who is god" argument. I nearly wanted to jump in and yell at someone. Also loved the notion of insisting on painting old walls in disrepair.

nayoung at 12:28 pm Wednesday, January 15, 2014


Calvin Woida at 3:20 pm Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A very intriguing exhibit.

Aida from Cuba at 3:21 pm Saturday, January 11, 2014

I loved this show! Thank

DerpyMCdoo at 2:53 pm Saturday, January 11, 2014

[ In reply to Sammy from Cuba at 2:49 pm Saturday, January 11, 2014 ] Derp

Sammy from Cuba at 2:49 pm Saturday, January 11, 2014

I personally liked this exhibit very much. Thanks alot for putting this show together,Sammy

kwak chanseul from korea at 3:12 pm Friday, January 10, 2014

so good I'm impressed I like the sentence"would you like to buy my misery?"

shusen from China at 2:58 pm Friday, January 10, 2014

The art from Havana is very interesting for me. It display a real world in another country, not only in materials but also spirits. Thank you for all who have contributed to it.

D. K. from Victoria at 11:20 am Friday, January 10, 2014

Wonderful show. Exceptional film and photography transcend the visual. New takes on old forms.

K.R at 8:58 pm Thursday, January 9, 2014

Hi UBC, I liked your(or whoever made it)eyeball animation that you had on the TV in the main gallery. The part I liked best about the animation was the part when there was the eyeball tree and suddenly men without eyes came rushing to get their eyes! I also liked how you put the headphones in a room and we got to listen to how it really sounded like when you're in a class without any student. It was interesting because the only sound I heard was a whoooooosh sound but when I read the sign that said that the sound was the sound of a class without any student I got interested in it. PS. The sugar canes I saw in the main gallery made my mouth water!

For further information please contact: Jana Tyner at jana.tyner@ubc.ca,
tel: (604) 822-1389, or fax: (604) 822-6689