Dania González Sanabria ⎸ Cuba
Hello. My name is Dania González Sanabria, and I am a Cuban artist. My work comprises progress-based installations, objects, and performances, generating immersive and interactive spaces.
The utopias and despairs of Cuba seem to motivate me to give fresh meaning to material, emotional, and social decay as a way to experience relief. With that spirit, my work delves into specific contexts, histories, and inhabitants, searching for their hidden sensitive and natural pulses.
This has led me to explore diverse conventional and public spaces in Colombia during my residency at Flora ars+natura, researching materials, territories, and communities. In Germany, I performed actions on the streets of highly developed West German cities and in empty and vandalized buildings from the former GDR, thanks to a DAAD scholarship. I have also participated in the Bienal de La Habana, KulturKontakt in Austria, and more.
Ánima (The inner landscape)
“Ánima (The inner landscape)” is a work-in-progress I am currently developing at the ACC Galerie in Weimar, a city in East Germany with a strong and diverse historical heritage. Arranged as a large growing installation, like an inner garden, this project collects memories from people through objects and writings they bring and plants mosses and vegetal life on those memories.
The installation features five watering systems comprised of containers and water pumps, which are suspended from the ceiling, resembling giant hearts. Hoses extend from these systems, branching out across the room like veins, pouring water where the memory objects are planted and assisting the growth of vegetation.
I have planted more than forty memories that illustrate passages of love, faith, segregation, migration, wars, etc. Visitors can also find a workshop station with soil and plants, papers, and pens, inviting them to plant new memories, share testimonies, and channel experiences.
This garden includes remains of intimate and professional stories — a brick that smashed a Caffe glass attacked constantly by groups of neo-Nazis, paper figures made by a Ukrainian war refugee remembering her childhood and homeland, and "treasures" from a village that, like many in East Germany, fights to not disappear.
There is also a photo made by a Second World War prisoner who, after the war, photographed landscapes and plants as a way of finding inner peace and "healing" his memories.
"Ánima", which refers to the soul found in everything, aims for people to find regenerative spaces and empathic communication for situations of loss, despair, and hostility in nature. Plants create mini-landscapes around each of those memories. They transform physically and subjectively those memories, evoking something positive; a new life and outcomes.
By pursuing people to channel experiences in a great and more "spiritual" space as nature is, I want to explore how our meaningful experiences may lead us to shape better presents and futures. I aim to create something rewarding and useful, even in simple actions like creating a garden, building new personal relationships, or helping somebody get rid of negative feelings.
Please follow me on Instagram @daniagonzalezsanabria.art to watch the development of this piece and future projects. Feel free to write to me at [email protected] if you would like to participate in this project "Ánima (The inner landscape)" by sending an object or sharing your written memories to be planted. I hope you want to get involved! https://daniags.wordpress.com/