By Irina Pino
HAVANA TIMES — Cuban photographer Yanahara Mauri Villareal’s (1984) nudes, border on the grotesque a lot of the time; bodies are normally accompanied by objects which are far removed from the classical beauty that the eye traditionally sees in this art form. She uses old masks, forks, motorcycle helmets, as well as other objects.
She also uses performance art in her work, on this occasion with transvestite model and photographer, Nonardo Perea, who she filmed a series video with.
Here, the contradiction that lies in heterosexual relationships is put on a pedestal, where gender roles justify the end: creating a new life, a child for society, where society is the one who rewards and gets something from it. But, Yanahara breaks away from stereotypes and suggests homoeroticism, masturbation, bodily violence instead, as well as other ways to experience sexual pleasure.
And this young artist establishes a “very unique harmony”, depending on the message she needs to communicate. However, in her role of model, she doesn’t depict herself, but constructs a real-surreal imaginary person, in the pursuit of the reaction she seeks.
Her latest exhibition Los hijos de Onan, can now be seen at the D’Nazco Studio, a private gallery, located at Espada 214, between San Lazaro and Jovellar Streets, in Central Havana.
The 20 photos exhibited have different messages and reveal different experiences. She uses black and white, color and textures in her photos and doesn’t leave the model empty, but rather enshrouds it with a very personal and unprejudiced point of view.
Go and see the work of this photographer, appreciate it or judge it, according to your own philosophy. However, she will surely not be overlooked by those who really enjoy photography.
Yanahara Mauri graduated from the Faculty of Arts and Literature at Havana University. She has taken part in group exhibitions in and outside Cuba. Previous exhibitions: Los espasmos de Venus (2011) and Puertas abiertas (2015). In 2010, she won awards at the Havana Photography Biennial and at the 1st Small Format Photography Festival. Her work has been published in Cuban and foreign publications. (2017)
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