Carlos Rodríguez Cárdenas, born in 1962 in Santi Spiritus, Villa Clara, is one of the important Cuban artists who came to contemporary art spotlight in the mid-1980’s. Since that time, his exile in Mexico in the early 1990s and settling in New York, his work has been known for its exquisite and ironic artistry, inviting the viewer to question reality and see beyond the world of the official word imposed by the system.
In his most recent work, Cárdenas rekindles the nature and landscape of New York and depicts the megalopolis in a more sobering new order with a balance of Cartesian-like geometries. His pictorial conventions are characterized by subtle counterpoints, mysticism and rationality, the yin and yang of the natural and urban environment.
Cárdenas is in major collections, including Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; Peter Ludwig Museum, Cologne, Germany; Ludwig Forum for International Art, Aachen, Germany; Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale; Museo Provincial de Santa Clara, Villa Clara; and National Museum of Fine Arts Havana, Cuba — as well as many private collections. He has exhibited internationally, including solo exhibitions at GE Galeria, Mexico; Galeria Nina Menocal, Mexico; Galeria Ramis F. Barquet, Madrid, Spain; Fredric Snitzer Gallery, Coral Gables; and ARCO 93 International Art Fair, Madrid. Group shows in which he has been featured include the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Perez Art Museum, Miami; 1989 Havana Biennial; Stadtische Kunsthalle,Dusseldorf, Germany; Centro Atlantico de Arte Moderno, Las Plasmas de Gran Canaria, Spain; and Samuel P. Hart Museum of Art. He earned the Collective Prize Cuban Painting, awarded to participate at the First Biennial Jaume Guasch, Barcelona, Spain. Cárdenas completed his arts studies in 1983 in Havana’s Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA), and currently lives and works in New York City.