Jorge Camacho

El Pajaro, la noche - The Bird, the night

Jorge Camacho. La Habana, 1934. Instinctively and inexplicably, in 1951 I decided to be a pointer. I never studied art; I adamantly refused to enter the School of Fine Arts. By the end of the 40's my friend, the poet Carlos M. Luis, and I were very well versed in contemporary painting, especially in surrealism. It was he who first introduced me to the paintings of Klee, Miro, Tanguy and De Chirico. In 1953 1 went to Mexico; I lived there for a year, and met the great Jose Luis Cuevas. My first major influence was the Wifredo Lam exhibit at the University of Havana in 1955. As a young man I was also influenced by the work of Tamoyo, Miro, Bacon and Tanguy. Basically, what is important is that these influences be positive, that they generat e a new and personal language. When I returned to Havana I had my first one-man show at the Cuban Gallery in 1954. Painters like Felipe Orlondo, Jose Ignacio Bermudez, Rene Portocarrero and the critic Jose Gomez Sicre lent me support with their friendship and encouragement. In a sense, they were my first ''teachers''. In 1960, I exhibited in Paris for the first time, at the R. Cordier Gallery. My meeting with Andre Breton in 1961 tied me to the Surrealist Movement. Surrealism is, without a doubt, the most important poetic creation of the XX century, because it is a world open to enchantment. As to the present? A series of works inspired by the magical and hermetic circle of the Shaman, that medicine man ever present in the life of all primitive societies. As to the future? A perennial openness to new horizons.