Wilfredo Lam painted the jungle in wrapping paper
The greatest human genius paradoxically have always lived and died in the abject poverty. Cuba is not an exception regarding this. That is the case of one of the transcendental painters of the island although with an Oriental surname, Wilfredo Lam.
The Jungle, his most outstanding work, 1942, is at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. However, in contrast to the luxury prevailing there, this work was originally conceived in wrapping paper because the artist could not afford the piece of cloths to make the work.
In fact, the Jungle is a denunciation work and the same museum in New York never understood it. Also, in 1943 was almost unusual to see a work of an artist not precisely from the white race, in the elitist collection. This work was perceived as an expression of a non-white American expression.
After emigrating from Cuba to United States, Lam suffered the effects of the racial discrimination, from the most humiliating ones to the most ordinary forms even the marginalization of the artist group of New York.
When solitude was intolerable for him, he departed to Europe where he found a group of Danish, Dutch and Belgian artists that welcomed his work.
The experts of that subject already considered Wilfredo Lam as one of the greatest contributors of the American plastic art in the second half of the 20th Century.