I always saw in the art of Sandor Gonzalez, in his stairs and buildings, and the flags with which he sometimes gave color to his works, an optimistic vibe. Perhaps it happens because I know him and I know he is a happy guy full of energy. Then he fell in love with the sea and Yemoja gave her blessing to welcome him to create down there where life began.
Suddenly, he offers this exhibition Del horror y otros demonios and I find him first sight in other dimension but, after my awe and consternation while watching some art pieces that seem quite real, impacting, still wrapped in metaphors. These pieces do not go in circles. And I realize, I have the hunch, that these deaths are just a discourse of life, and urging call to life.
A propos of the exhibition, still open to the public in the Cultural Center Fresa y Chocolate in Havana, we talked to Sandor Gonzalez.
What inspired you to address the subject of violence?
I have had the fortune of travelling abroad for many years and the misfortune of feeling violence, especially on women. I have met pimps. I even pushed one of them out of the club I was in Madrid. From that moment on, I earned the trust of the owner who shared my viewpoint in this regard. This sort of men are violent and it was his neighborhood…It happened in Barco street, in Madrid. The pimp introduced the new girls to any young man. They are silk, he said, and they are quite (they were high)…They boasted his merchandise…It was tough. It left quite an impression on me, among other experiences…
I have been also witness of machetes’ attacks, stabbing, and gunshots. I know every corner of Cuba. I have been in the slums of Sao Paolo, Caracas, Haiti, Russia, South Africa, Buenos Aires…I have been there. We had to pay 3.000 dollar for a two-hours shooting. They were the longest two hours of my life.
The piece of art recreating a gunshot has a very personal approach as you are part of it. Why?
Revolver is a leap of faith. I shot myself with the faith nothing bad will happen to me. It is a piece of art dedicated to my enemies. I will die when my time comes, not to the will of others.
I noticed a relationship between death and solitude. How much emotions and concerns did you want to portray?
Death is always accompanied by solitude and solitude most of the time leads to death. I have lost many friends who have committed suicide…I am convinced they felt overwhelmingly alone to make a decision like that.
Women are broadly addressed in this collection. Although the exhibition is about violence, women are treated differently regarding titles, brightness…What are the messages or symbolism you wanted to share?
Women are the greatest. The most beautiful things in the world. But they are also the most suffering beings. I belong to a male chauvinist society. I have it in my blood. But it does not stop me from trying to be a better human being. I believe in the human betterment starting by myself. Everyone plays a role in life. I decided to become an artist and therefore denounce the scourge of humanity. This exhibition is a debt paid with my work; hence, my beliefs.
Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz/CubaSi Translation Staff