After the Revolution They Built an Art School Over the Golf Course, Textiles, 230x115, 230x250, 230x115cm, 2017; Installed at Turf Projects for You’re Surrounded by Me, July - Sept 2017 (photo by Tim Bowditch)

In April 2017, Sigourney Weaver appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. During the interview she briefly described the art school that had been built over the Havana golf course. Thanks to her leading role in the Alien franchise, Weaver is tied to the notion of imagining the future.

In 1961, Fidel Castro and Che Guevara played several rounds of golf on the Havana Country Club's golf course. Prior to the Cuban Revolution, this had been a private space occupied by Havana's elite, adorned with signs that declared 'whites only'. The pair decided to build an art school over the carefully manicured landscape. Their plans were only partially realised.

Since his inauguration, Donald Trump has spent a significant amount of time on golf courses. Having declared a ‘national emergency’, he spent the following weekend golfing. The sport is part of his global brand; a brand he sought to bolster with his 2016 Presidential Campaign.

After the Revolution They Built an Art School Over the Golf Course recontextualises the call to build an art school over the golf course. It prefigures a post-Trump moment; one that involves a shift from privatisation and profiteering towards the rejuvenation of the commons, free education and critical thinking.

Installation view: Bloomberg New Contemporaries, South London Gallery, Dec 2018 – Feb 2019 (photo by Andy Stagg)

With thanks to:
Eleanor Meade