Magnan Metz Gallery is proud to announce Listening to Silence, the first U.S. solo exhibition for Cuban artist, Glenda León. Listening to Silence will be on view from January 12 – February 18, 2012 with an artist reception on Thursday, January 12th from 6-8PM.
True listening—that in which we empty ourselves of thought and ego, to let in the word and the presence of another entirely, is becoming more and more rare. In a world filled with haste, stress, and an increasing disconnect between human and nature- a sense of blindness and deafness is building greater with each day. To listen totally and completely is to leave behind our inner noise, brought on by desires, preoccupations, fears and frustrations that too often invade our minds. It is a deeper way to approach and understand the other, the world, and ultimately ourselves. In Listening to Silence, the artist tries to influence the acts of looking and listening from a new point of view: seeing the sounds, hearing the images.
León’s artwork spans from drawing to video art, including installation, objects and photographs. She is interested in the interstices between sound and silence, the visible and invisible, the ephemeral and eternal - visual poetry. The focal piece in the show, Objeto Mágico Encontrado #5 (Magical Found Object) presents a broken Baby Grand piano resting on the ground, missing one leg, with flowers growing out of its interior. The work exemplifies the artist’s optimism: the piano in ruins brings forth flowers, a metaphor of music’s power to continue to blossom in ones soul. Escuchando las estrellas/Listening to Stars, a sound installation comprised of a music box and video projection, in which the stars are musical notes, symbolizes an attempt to increase Man’s connection with Nature and the Cosmos. It is a reminder that although these things are far away and unattainable, neither should we forget that they are a part of our being.
Glenda León (Havana 1976) graduated from the Academy of Superior Art and New Medias, Cologne, Germany in 2007. She has exhibited internationally with solo and group shows in Europe, Canada and Latin America. Currently her work is part of a group show at the Centre George Pompidou, Paris as well as the traveling exhibition “Video Cubano” at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco. In 2010 León received a research scholarship from Beca MAEC in Madrid as well as a residency with Fonderie Darling, Montreal and a 2004 Pollock-Krasner Grant. León has works in the collection of the Centre George Pompidou, Paris, Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes, La Habana, Cuba, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Rhode Island School of Design Museum, Providence and Walter Philip Gallery, Alberta, Canada. The artist currently lives and works in Havana.