Thursday, 28 May 2015 19:14






Miami, FL – March 2015 - CIFO | Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation is proud to announce the winners of our Grants & Commissions Program for 2015.


Ten Latin American artists have been named as recipients of the 2015 CIFO Grants & Commissions Program. Adrian Balseca (Ecuador), Domingo Castillo (El Salvador-Miami), Javier Castro (Cuba), Alice Miceli (Brazil), Nascimento/Lovera (Venezuela), and Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa (Guatemala) each received an Emerging Artist award; Ivan Argote (Colombia), Silvia Gruner (Mexico), and Pablo Vargas Lugo (Mexico) received the Established Artist; and Leandro Katz (Argentina) received the Achievement award.



The CIFO Grants & Commissions Program offers emerging, mid-career, and established contemporary artists from Latin America the opportunity to develop and present new work to both local and international audiences in Miami. Each year artists are nominated by CIFO’s Honorary Advisory Committee of leading art professionals, curators, and artists from around the world. The program rewards proposals by Latin American artists of works not previously exhibited. The recipients will benefit from international exposure, as well as an opportunity to work in ideal conditions. The awards recognize outstanding projects by emerging artists and honor the trajectory of mid-career artists. The Foundation Achievement Award, recognizes the contributions of established artist.  



We would like to welcome the recipients of our Grants & Commissions Program and thank the applicants, curators, staff, and critics involved in the selection process. We are looking forward to the materialization of their proposals, and projects this following September during our yearly exhibition of their work at the CIFO Art Space (Miami).



For the third consecutive year CIFO is partnering with Cannonball, an Artist Residency based in Downtown Miami. A two-month residency is awarded to two of the Grants & Commissions Program recipients. CIFO’s Board of Directors selected Javier Castro (Cuba), and Alice Miceli (Brazil) for the residency, where they will spend the time leading up to the exhibition focusing on creating their projects, and exchanging ideas and experiences with the local art community.








ADRIAN BALSECA (ECUADOR) a self-taught artist who has exhibited his work in solo, and group shows locally, and internationally: Quito en Zaragoza, Centro de la Historia Zaragoza-España; Ecuadorian Renaissance, Community Art Gallery Queens Museum of Art, New York - EEUU; Si Hay Gas, Galería El Container, Quito; Lo que pasó pasó, Espacio Arte Actual, Quito, among others. He has participated in the 12th International Biennial of Cuenca, 2013; Primera Bienal de Artes No Visuales in the museum Nahím Isaías de Guayaquil; and in the Salon Mariano Aguilera where he won first honorable mention in 2008.



DOMINGO CASTILLO (EL SALVADOR-MIAMI) selected exhibitions include: Credit of the Discontent, General Practice (Brooklyn, NY); Twilight, Klüngel (Düsseldorf, Germany); Time Capsule 2014-2044, UNLV Marjorie Barrick Museum (Las Vegas, NV); and New Works Miami 2013, Miami Art Museum (PAMM) (Miami, FL).



JAVIER CASTRO(CUBA) artistic training took place in three different academies in La Habana, Cuba --where he resides-- including The Instituto Superior de Arte where he received a B.A. in Fine Arts. His video work was received honors and awards in Cuba, and Italy. He had his first solo exhibition in 2009 in Cuba, and group exhibitions including: “The Spaces Between: Contemporary Art from Havana”, Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery (Vancouver, Canada 2014); Bildmuseet Umeå University (Sweden, 2015); and the “11th Biannual of Havana.” (Havana, Cuba 2012).


ALICE MICELI (BRAZIL) received a B.A. from the Ecole Superieure d’ Etudes Cinématographiques, in Paris, and an M.A. in Brazilian Art and Architecture History from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro. Miceli has had solo exhibitions at the Nara Roesler Gallery in São Paulo, and Max Protetch Gallery in New York. Her work has been shown at festivals and institutions around the world, including the Sao Paulo Biennale, the Tomie Ohtake Institute in Brazil, the Japan Media Arts Festival in Japan, the Transitio_MX Festival in Mexico, the Mediations Biennial in Poland, the Sydney Film Festival in Australia, the Z33 Contemporary Art Space in Belgium, the transmediale festival  and the ZKM in Germany, and the New York International Independent Film Festival.  Residencies include the Brown Foundation Program at Dora Maar House in France, and Jan Van Eyck Academy residency in Maastricht, Holland. Miceli received the IP Institute Award (PIPA Prize) in Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), The Videobrasil Incentive Award, and the Sergio Motta Art and Technology Award in São Paulo, and Transmediale Award, in Berlin.



NASCIMENTO/LOVERA (VENEZUELA) the artist duo lives and works in Caracas, Venezuela.They have exhibited in the Bienal de Sao Paulo, the Latin American Roaming Art Residency program (Museo de Arte Contemporáneo, Lima, Peru 2013), and an MFA exhibition in Boston (US)in 2014. They won the X Premio Eugenio Mendoza in 2000.



NAUFUS RAMÍREZ-FIGUEROA (GUATEMALA) received a B.F.A. from Emily Carr University and an M.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2008. He has participated in various solo and group exhibitions including: The Illy Present Future (Castello di Rivoli, Italy 2013), A History of Interventions (Tate Modern, UK), Beber y Leer El Arcoiris (Casa América, Madrid), and the 10th Gwangju Biennale in 2014. He is a recipient of a Guggenheim fellowship, a Franklin Furnace Award, an Akademie Schloss Solitude Fellowship (selected by Dan Graham), and the “Best Young Artist” Award at ARCO the same year.






IVAN ARGOTE (COLOMBIA) his work has been exhibited in The Palais de Tokyo, Galerie Perrotin in Paris, OLM Space in Neuchâtel,The 30th Sao Pablo Biennal, The Socrates Sculpture Park in New York, “Sin Heroismos, Por Favor”, Curated by Tania Pardo, and cities such as Salzburg, London, Madrid, Prague, and Vienna.



SILVIA GRUNER (MEXICO) attended the Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem, Israel (1978-1982), and the Massachusetts College of Art in Boston (1984-1986). Her work has been exhibited in Mexico, Slovenia, and Sweden. Her extensive list of venues include: the Museo de Arte Moderno in Mexico City (2009); Museo Experimental El ECO in Mexico City (2007); The Jewish Museum in New York (2006); Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia in Madrid, Spain (2005); Sala de Arte Público Siqueiros in Mexico City (2004); The Power Plant in Toronto, Canada (2003); the Guggenheim Museum in N.Y (2001); Los Angeles County Museum of Art (2001); Kwanju Biennale in Kwanju, Korea(2000); Museo de Arte Contemporáneo in San Diego (1998, 2002); The 2nd Johannesburg Biennale in Cape Town, South Africa (1997); Biennale of Sydney, Australia (1996); Ikon Gallery in Birgminham, UK (1995); Frankfurter Kunstverein in Frankfurt (1992); and The Institute For Contemporary Art in Boston (1991). She has received the Sistema Nacional de Creadores de Arte FONCA, Mexico and the Rockefeller Mac Arthur Film, Video, and Multimedia Fellowship.



PABLO VARGAS LUGO (MEXICO) a visual artist born in 1968 who has exhibited his work around the world. Venues include: The Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo (Mexico City); Museo Amparo (Puebla, Mexico); Museo Experimental El Eco (Mexico City); Galerie Jocelyn Wolff; and  Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil. Vargas Lugo participated in the 26th Sao Paulo Biennial and The Mattress Factory (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) and IASPIS (Stockholm) residencies.






LEANDRO KATZ (ARGENTINA) is a visual artist, a writer, and a filmmaker mainly known for his films and his photographic installations. He has been a member of the faculty at the School of Visual Arts at Brown University, and at William Paterson University. His works include long-term projects that incorporate history, anthropology, and visual arts to Latin American subjects. He has produced seventeen films and published several books. Book titles include S(h)elf Portrait  (Buenos Aires, 2008), Natural History, and The Ghosts of Ñancahuazú (both published in 2010).  He has received funding from the Guggenheim Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, The National Endowment for the Arts, The Jerome Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the Hubert Bals Fund.


For more information about CIFO and the Grants & Commissions program, visit










The Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation (CIFO) is a non-profit organization established in 2002 by Ella Fontanals-Cisneros and her family to support artists who are exploring new directions in contemporary art. CIFO fosters cultural understanding and educational exchange through three primary initiatives: a Grants and Commissions Program for emerging and mid-career visual artists from Latin America; an exhibitions program showcasing international contemporary art from the Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection at the CIFO Art Space; and foundation-initiated support for other arts and culture projects.





Diego Paredes
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