Gabriel Raúl Cisneros

The young sculptor Gabriel Raúl Cisneros (1990, Las Tunas, Cuba) lives and works in Havana. The artist has been a disciple of the Cuban sculptor José Villa Soberón for more than five years, with whom he has created a considerable number of commemorative sculptures. He has participated in various group and personal exhibitions in Cuba and abroad. His work forms part of collections in Panama, Mexico, the United States and Lebanon. He won second prize in Post-it 6, a Cuban art competition for emerging artists.

Cisneros' sculptures from their morphology try to test the nature of reality, they show themselves to us in an unexpected way and place us in the middle of a twisted mental game, which inevitably catches our attention and our empathy. "I think that between perception and reflection is where these works find their place, it is there to tell us something about our gaze, about the way we expect reality to be shown to us".

The series that the artist is presenting at Art Madrid is entitled "El ocio y la embestida" . In this series, the pedestal's mission is not only to raise the work off the ground and emphasise its upright character, but also to express the idea that the work is a heavy, solid and massive volume, capable of surviving the passage of time. But the pedestal is also the altar on which the deeds of the heroes are commemorated or the events that gave rise to the elevation are remembered: the collective memory of the citizens is venerated on this altar. But these are times marked by the end of the myths that generated these works, and the loss of the pedestal in contemporary sculpture reflects the absence of the commemorative will that characterises traditional sculpture.


Tell us about your creative process.

In general, the material I use in my works is polyester resin, a material that interests me a lot because it is very versatile, offers many possibilities and is perfectly suited to my work process. It is a work process that usually starts with an idea. You walk down the street and things occur to you that later mature inside, on the work table.

My sculptures are preceded by a drawing. Once I have the idea of the work, I work with a model, to better visualise the posture, and to help me with photography when constructing the piece, from there we move on to the workshop work where we start with a metal frame that will support the material on which the work is modelled, and this is the creative part of the process, this is where the sculpture takes its shape and acquires all the details, this is when I give it its final form. Then several technicians get involved who make plaster moulds of the piece and laminate the resin, the mould is broken and the resin figure comes out, which is retouched and then we move on to the assembly and placement.

What are you currently working on?

I'm currently working on a series of sculptures that take commemorative sculpture from the late 19th and early 20th centuries as a reference. What I'm doing is taking the sculpture as an object and decontextualising it, that is, taking it out of its usual location, the park, the pedestal, the city environment, and bringing it into the gallery.

I am interested in how the sculpture, this specific type of sculpture, is charged with a different content, the original content, inside the gallery space where, of course, by changing the position, the situation is re-signified. I really like the way in which the space where the sculpture is placed conditions the object, the sculpture on the pedestal, in the park, has a different meaning and character to the one that the same object might have inside the gallery in a different situation to the one we normally find it in. I'm very interested in how the spectator's view of the same object can change depending on the space that surrounds it.

You're participating in the fair for the first time, what do you expect from Art Madrid?

The possibility of participating in Art Madrid is for me a door that opens to the European public. It's my first time participating in the fair, the first time my work will be in Spain and in Europe. Of course it's something that excites me, to see how the pieces work in a context outside the Cuban national context.

Gabriel Raúl Cisneros

Ocio, 2021


15 x 15cm

You usually work with medium and large format sculpture. Is it possible that with these formats you achieve a more real and closer connection with the spectator?

I usually work with medium and large format sculptures, but on this occasion, I'm specifically interested in small format sculpture, in this case models of works that I will later make on a larger scale. Because in this format, I can rehearse the situation in which I want to place the sculptural object. As it is a smaller format, it allows me, without risking too much, to make visible all the possibilities that this object offers me, and by placing it in different situations and positions, meanings emerge.

Gabriel Raúl Cisneros participates for the first time in Art Madrid with the gallery Collage Habana, junto a los artistas Frank González, Luis Enrique Camejo y Yohy Suárez.

In the year 2020 in the heart of Barcelona a wandering gallery was born, the same one that in February 2021 would debut at Art Madrid with an exhibition proposal focused on contemporary portraits; with this subject matter it would manage to create a powerful dialogue between artwork and audience and make the seal Inéditad remain in the history of the event that contained it.

Jean Carlos Puerto. Protección. Oil and copper leaf on wood. 60 x 48. 2021. Image courtesy of the gallery.

Since that first time and until today, the wandering gallery has managed to build projects on otherness, has repositioned in the spotlight the discourses on the LGTBIQ+ collective, has consolidated a group of artists who share its principles of resilience and empathy and the best thing is that it continues to bet from the professionalism and commitment to give voice to the difference.

Claudio Petit-Laurent.. El Joven de la Perla. Oil on wood. 30 x 30 cm. 2023. Image courtesy of the gallery.

Inéditad Gallery, thanks to its founder Luis López, its collaborators and the infinite possibilities manifested in the works of the artists it represents, is a gallery that has demonstrated its capacity and courage to stimulate the sensibility of the public through art and seduce a generation that moves between the glass window and the analogical story. Inéditad is a nomadic gallery that has gathered around it a community of artists and has moved the context with exhibition projects that think about LGTBIQ+ art without prejudices.

Pepa Salas Vilar. Las marcas del arcoiris. Oil on canvas. 40 x 50 cm. 2022. Image courtesy of the gallery.

Pride and Prejudice was inaugurated. An exhibition that brings together the works of sixteen artists: Abel Carrillo, Alex Domènech, Carlos Enfedaque, Silvia Flechoso, Jamalajama, Daniel Jaén, Claudio Petit-Laurent, Jean Carlos Puerto, Fernando Romero, Pablo Rodríguez, Pepa Salas Vilar, Jack Smith, Pablo Sola, Bran Sólo, Elia Tomás and Utürüo. Painting, illustration, photography and digital art are the manifestations that bring into dialogue around fifty neatly threaded pieces, in a discursive line that discusses such a latent phenomenon as discrimination. To achieve this, the artists invited to the exhibition question themselves whether: Does discrimination exist within the LGTBIQ+ collective?

Pride and Prejudice Official Poster. Image courtesy of the gallery.

With approaches on and from the body, the proposal invites to celebrate diversity, proposes to question and self-question the prejudices and attitudes of society against the collective. Pride and Prejudice is a space for dialogue about the constructs imposed on us by society. It is also an oasis in which to deconstruct with tolerance and respect the subjectivities that sometimes prevent us from approaching the production of the participating artists, simply because "the beautiful" does not fit in an androgynous body. The subjugation of stereotypes are pressed with determination to find the beauty of diversity in other palpable facets of reality.

Pablo Sola. All men are dogs. Photography. 2014. Image courtesy of the gallery.

Throughout these three years Inéditad has stimulated the vindictive projection towards bad practices, has questioned estates around the LGTBIQ+ body and the most admirable thing, is that these capacities have resurfaced around the dialogue and the visual narrative of the stories that are told from the visual: Artworks that are people, art that is, per se, humanity. Overcome impositions and accept what is different in order to continue fighting against homophobia, biphobia, lesbophobia or transphobia and defend the equal rights that all the acronyms of the collective deserve in our community.

That's Pride and Prejudice: One creature, the happiest in the world. And maybe other projects and other people have said it - or felt it - before, but none so fairly.

Silvia Flechoso. Hola, soy maricón. Oil on canvas. 73 x 54 cm. 2023. Image courtesy of the gallery.

From June 8th until June 22nd you can visit Pride and Prejudice. Carrer de Palau núm. 4. Canal Gallery space. Barcelona.