Quite an appropriate reference considering that she is intent on redefining the mission of the museum in a way that advances the importance of the juxtaposition of historic and contemporary art.
Cubiñá has been at her post for one year now, hailing from a six-year stint at the Moore Space, and in her quest to reposition the cultural institution to a level of stature within the community, all predictions are that artists, collectors, patrons, residents, and community leaders are ready to embrace her avant-garde push towards the future.
Haute Living What is the mission of the Bass Museum?
Silvia Karman Cubiñá We are actually in the process of redeveloping our mission statement. The foundation of the museum will always be to engage people by creating a dialogue between contemporary art and historic art because that is what our collection reflects. But my goal is to ensure that we never become complacent in that strategy, or stagnant with recycled ideas. I am on a constant quest to determine how to historicize contemporary art; and how to make art that was created in the 1600s, let’s say, relevant and engaging for us today.
We’ve come up with a lot of ideas, but it’s an ongoing conversation, not just within the museum, but with the community as well, and its something that we’ve yet to nail down completely. The first exhibition initiated after I arrived was called The Endless Renaissance, so we paired things that had relevance to one another. For example, we found a contemporary video produced by an artist who was inspired by the work of Delacroix, as well as an abstract painting that was also inspired by Delacroix. It’s so intriguing because contemporary artists don’t produce in a void, they produce with tens of thousands of years of creativity behind them and they know that history, so they research and use it as a source of inspiration.