One of the most significant artists to emerge from post-Revolutionary Cuba, María Magdalena Campos-Pons created a garden for Montalvo’s grounds with participation from the community. Taking inspiration from an aerial photograph of a Soviet medium-range ballistic missile installation taken by a US Air force plane during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, this garden is part peace memorial and part living sketch. Campos-Pons is interested in the uneasy juxtaposition of the visual beauty of the photograph upon which she based her garden plan—which looks like blooming flowers set inside a hexagram shape–and the horror and destructive capability that the image belies. Imole means “earth” in the Yoruba language. The garden was planted with the help of community participants on Sunday, July 15 and is dedicated to the life and work of Kanishka Raja and to peace, healing, a world of tolerance and respect, and love.

​The work was created with the participation of Valerie Archer Wainwright, Emmalyn Aviet, Kelsie de la Ossa, Rhiannon Janeschild, Caroline Lawson, Kyle Martin, Dan North, Ann Northrup, Isaiah Plaza, Danya Wang, and Chris Yamashita.

Watch the making of María Magdalena Campos-Pons’ peace garden, Imole Blue II (Field of Memories), from videographer Brandon Hanson below.

Meet the Artist

María Magdalena Campos-Pons is one of the most significant artists to emerge from post-Revolutionary Cuba. Her diverse practice encompasses painting, mixed media installation, performance, video and photography. Her work often collapses time periods, geographical space, personal and collective history and memory to render visible the lives and experience of Afro-Cuban diaspora communities, and offer new ways of thinking about the complexities of cultural identity. Campos-Pons’s work is held in permanent collections of such institutions as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; National Museum of Fine Arts, Havana, Cuba; The Art Institute of Chicago; The Fogg Museum, Harvard University, Cambridge; The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; among many others. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including most recently a fellowship from the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation in 2016 and the 2013 Jane Fortune Outstanding Women Visiting Artist Lecture.

Partners and Sponsors

Imole Blue II was commissioned by the Lucas Artists Program at Montalvo Arts Center (2018) and made possible through the generous support of the following program partners, exhibition sponsors, and Friends of the Lucas Artists Program:
Anonymous • Philip & Jennifer DiNapoli • William and Flora Hewlett Foundation • Wanda Kownacki • Sally & Don Lucas • George & Judy Marcus Family Foundation • National Endowment for the Arts • David and Lucile Packard Foundation • Charmaine & Dan Warmenhoven

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