Cuba’s most widely known and critically acclaimed art collective has officially dissolved.

Last week, Marco Castillo of Los Carpinteros issued a press release headlined “Dissolution of the Collective LOS CARPINTEROS; New Horizons for Its Two Artists.”

“Alexandre Arrechea, Dagoberto Rodríguez and I met in Havana at the Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA) at the beginning of the 1990s, just after the fall of the Berlin Wall,” Castillo wrote.

Los Carpinteros, “Un Peso,” 1991
Courtesy The Farber Collection

“During this difficult period, we forged our friendship and founded the collective Los Carpinteros.

“In 2003, Alexandre decided to pursue a new direction, and since then has built a solid solo career. The duo continued, and with time gained worldwide recognition for their work.”

Castillo went on to state that “My commitment to the works and the legacy of Los Carpinteros remains intact. Works that have been commissioned will be executed and completed, as well as future exhibitions that have been planned.”

A view of “Los Carpinteros: Susurro del Palmar (The Whisper of the Palm Grove),” presented this past June-July at Peter Kilchmann Gallery, Zurich
Courtesy Los Carpinteros and Peter Kilchmann Gallery

But that is the end of the duo’s joint production. “Apart from these previous commitments, in the future there will be no new works under the signature of Los Carpinteros,” Castillo wrote.

“All other considerations and matters related to Los Carpinteros will require signed consent by both Castillo and Rodríguez. Certificates of authenticity will require the signature of both artists and, for the work prior to 2003, also that of Arrechea.”

Los Carpinteros, “Faro Tumbado,” 2004
Courtesy The Farber Collection

Castillo concluded the press release on a buoyant note. “I will continue the searching and exploration that has guided my creative efforts to this day. Full of gratitude for the past years, I now look with optimism towards the next chapter of my career and the prospect of an individual art practice.”

This past May, Los Carpinteros set a record at auction for Catedral, a rare 1995 assemblage by Castillo, Rodríguez, and Arrechea. Presented in Christie’s Latin American sale, the piece more than doubled its low estimate, reaching $456, 500 (including buyer’s premium).

Los Carpinteros, “Catedral,” 1995
Courtesy Christie’s

Los Carpinteros’ works are in the permanent collections of the Museo de Bellas Artes, Havana, Cuba; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Tate, London; the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia, Madrid, Spain; the Thyssen-Bornemisza Contemporary Art Foundation, Vienna, Austria; the Centro Cultural de Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City, Mexico; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, among others.

Cuban Art News wishes Marco and Dagoberto success in the next phase of their careers.

Los Carpinteros, “Cosmos,” 2004
Courtesy The Farber Collection