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Wonders

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CONTENTS April/May

2011

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PABLO CANO: SEVEN WONDERS OF THE MODERN WORLD

ON THE COVER : PABLO CANO, GINGER BOBBY PIN (2011), AND INTERNET TAPPER FACE BOOKA (2011), MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST RIGHT: PABLO CANO,

Miami artist and master puppeteer, Pablo Cano, returns to MOCA, North Miami with a new multi-media musical production featuring his beloved and masterfully crafted marionettes, which take the form of his personal selection of the modern world’s wonders.

CELL PHONE FROG (2011), MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ

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WONDERS of the

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GINGER BOBBY PIN, 2011, MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ


INTERNET TAPPER FACE BOOKA, 2011, MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ


PABLO CANO: Seven Wonders

of the Modern World

Since childhood, marionettes have fascinated Pablo Cano. At the age

of ten, he was mounting elaborate plays for his family, featuring puppets constructed of household bric-

a-brac. His primary work today continues to center around the marionettes that he fashions from found

objects, and the performance pieces he composes to showcase these protagonists.

“I create a dream world where inanimate objects come

to life—springing from my imagination in the Surrealist

tradition,” says Cano, “but my work is founded on Dada

ideals. The Dadaists used chance, spontaneity, and child-

like innocence in order to create their statement. Their intention, as is my own, was to break with tradition and painting technique and to return to the elemental basics of

art—to start from scratch—to allow the process of imagination to unfold and begin anew each time I create.”

Seven Wonders of the Modern World is Pablo Cano’s

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PABLO CANO: Seven Wonders of the Modern World

a brand new multi-media musical presentation featuring Cano’s beloved marionettes, which take the form of his personal selection of the modern world’s wonders. Cano worked in collaboration with New York-based writer, Carmen Pelaez, and Miami-based choreographer, Katherine Kramer, to produce Seven Wonders. The production is dedicated to Pablo’s grandparents, Ana Bergada and Rafael Fernandez Ruenes. “America witnessed an historic breakthrough with the election of President Obama in 2008,” explains Cano. “This memorable Presidential election inspired me to create the concept for Seven Wonders. The idea evolved over the next three years, with the help of renowned stage comedian and playwright, Carmen Pelaez, who wrote the script and adapted lyrics to music from popular American songs from the 1930s and ’50s.”

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Cano considers this marionette play an American folk art piece—a work in progress, forever changing as future “wonders of the modern world” are invented. “I tried to choose seven modern wonders, inspired by the Theater of the Absurd and current discoveries and ideas that would be suitable for interesting marionette forms,” he says. “The brilliant choreography of Katherine Kramer, along with four dancers/puppeteers, brings the marionettes to life with movement, lighting and music.” The delightful and whimsical Seven Wonders marionette characters include: 1. The Bobby Pins: Fred and Ginger 2. The Internet Tappers: GOOGLEINA, FACE BOOKA and AMAZONA

3. Minty the Tooth Paste and Bing the Tooth Brush


MINTY THE TOOTH PASTE, 2011, MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST OPPOSITE: BING THE TOOTH BRUSH, 2011, MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ


PRESIDENT OBAMA, 2011, MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ


PABLO CANO: Seven Wonders

of the Modern World

4. The Cell Phone Frog, AKA: Mr. Maurice Cellvaille 5. The Madonna of the DNA 6. The Clone Clowns 7. The Satellite Ballerina (SADI), aka: Strategic American Defense Initiative All of the marionettes have been created with discarded materials collaged with silver

around, is the grand finale! “Each marionette is a complete sculpture in its own right and, when not in performance, the marionettes and set will be on view as an exhibition in their inanimate state; but when their creator and grand puppeteer, Cano, performs them, the figures will take on a life force, causing audience members to

“Seven Wonders of the Modern World is a work in progress that promises hope to Americans.” —Pablo Cano cigarette paper foil. The Seven Wonders’ characters reside inside an old grocery cart that transforms, onstage, into a beautiful marionette theater. Cano’s marionette of Louis Armstrong singing “It’s a Wonderful World,” with President Obama and the Seven Wonders’ characters gathered

suspend their disbelief,” says Bonnie Clearwater, Director and Chief Curator, MOCA, North Miami. “It was clear, right from Cano’s first productions at MOCA, that a truly original artist, who marched to his own drummer, was in our midst. In the 1990s, at a time when conceptual art dominatOnV

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PABLO CANO: Seven Wonders of the Modern World

ed the international art world, Cano followed his heart and passion, seeing treasures in garbage and bringing unforgettable characters into existence.” “For me, the most anticipated element of the process of creation is the final step— when the contributors (choreographers, dancers, actors, musi-

Influences from the color palette of Russian Constructivist, Alexandra Exter, who assembled marionettes in the 1920s, the mechanics of the pieces in Alexander Calder’s Circus and Cubist bricolage can be seen in Cano’s work. By incorporating carefully selected, discarded debris from

“ The human condition is always one of the most important elements in my work as a puppeteer.” —Pablo Cano cians and producers) sprinkle magic stardust over the tenderly assembled detritus and bring the cast of remarkably unique marionettes to life,” says Cano. “I am sure the stardust has worked when I see in the faces of the audience, young and old, the unfolding of their connection with the characters in the production.”

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the urban streets he frequents, as well as miscellany brought to his studio by friends from all over the world, he has developed his own charming and inventive palette. Cano employs numerous art forms in his work, including: oil and watercolor painting, fine drawing, charcoal and ceramic sculpture—he is accomplished


CELL PHONE FROG, 2011, MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ


“MOCA, North Miami has made it possi incarnations of my own reality through marion in each of these areas. Born in Havana, Cuba, in 1961, Cano was on the last flight out of the country before the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. He received his MFA from Queens College of the City University of New York in 1985 and has studied and worked in New York, Paris, Baltimore and Miami. He is a resident of

PAST MOCA PERFORMANCES HAVE INCLUDED (LEFT TO RIGHT): BUSTY GALORE, 2007; ATHENA (CAVALETTI’S DREAM), 2009; THE CYCLOPS (CAVALETTI’S DREAM), 2009; MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ

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Miami’s Little Havana and is considered one of Florida’s premier contemporary fine artists. MOCA, North Miami has commissioned his work annually since 1997. Pablo Cano’s work is found in numerous public and private collections internationally, including: MOCA, North Miami; Museum of Art/Fort Lauderdale; Lowe


PABLO CANO: Seven Wonders

of the Modern World

ble for people of all ages to escape inside ette theater...for this, I am thankful.”—Pablo Cano Museum, University of Miami, Coral Gables; Cintas Foundation, New York, NY; Samuel Dorsky Museum of Art, SUNY at New Paltz, New Paltz, NY; The Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, GA; The Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Minneapolis, MN; Art in Public Places, Olympia, GA; Bacardi, Miami; R.J.

Reynolds Company, WinstonSalem, NC; Sagamore Hotel, Collection of Martin & Cricket Taplin, Miami Beach; and the Rubell Family Collection, Miami. You can also catch Pablo’s solo show, Ladies In White, on view through April 2nd at the Kelley Roy Gallery in Wynwood (www. kelleyroygallery.com). O n V iew OnV

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PAST MOCA PERFORMANCES HAVE INCLUDED (LEFT TO RIGHT): LADY IN WHITE VASE, STANDING SCULPTURE, 2009; PRINCESS TULA (CITY BENEATH THE SEA), 2005; RED DIABLO (VIVA VAUDEVILLE), 2007; MIXED MEDIA, COURTESY OF THE ARTIST, PHOTOGRAPHY BY JOSÉ RODRIGUEZ

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