Italian Artist Anila Rubiku Showcases Her Work at Zygote Press

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If you haven’t heard yet, the latest round of Creative Fusion artists from around the world are currently in residence at local arts organizations in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio. For three months throughout the spring, these artists will work with their community, peers, students and their host organizations to produce new work and engage our community in an effort to exchange ideas and cultures.

Stop by Zygote Press at 10 a.m. this Saturday, April 23, to meet Anila Rubiku and learn about the Albanian-born Italian artist and her powerful work. Currently dividing her time between Milan, Tirana and Toronto, Rubiku’s work deals with social and political issues. Anila Rubiku studied at the Tirana Academy of Arts (1994) and did her graduate studies in Milan at the Brera Academy (2000). “Rubiku has native talent, imagination and social commitment,” adds Zygote Press Executive Director Liz Maugans. “For this she was awarded by Foreign Policy Magazine and the US State Department one of the top Global Thinkers of 2014 (Washington, D.C.) and was nominated by the Human Rights Foundation in May 2014.”

Maugans continues: “Zygote Press is pleased to present the first solo Cleveland exhibition by Albanian-born Italian artist Anila Rubiku, who is featuring her new work about chains and their collective meaning as universal signifiers; for the enigma of love, and heartbreak. Rubiku has married lyrics from the American blues songbook to her sculpture, silk screens, and charcoal works. Her works are poetic and practical exposures of the human social psychological condition wrapped up in an ironic sense of humor.

"Since Anila is not a trained printmaker," Maugans says, "it has been exciting watching her at Zygote's collaborative studio, discovering new processes that she can build on in the future. She has also really reveled in working in a collective shop which can be intimidating at times for the artists who have traditionally worked alone in their studios. She seems to have really appreciated learning from this collective Zygote osmosis."

During her residency at Zygote Press, Rubiku plans to immerse herself in our local culture in an effort to discover the unique elements of Cleveland and Northeast Ohio, “things that are very crucial for this town and not somewhere else,” explains the artist.

Maugans adds: “Besides her work for this solo show, Anila is working with the Thomas Jefferson Newcomers Academy students who will presenting their work at Zygote in the near future. She has also presented her work to the Cleveland Institute of Art’s Social Practice Class and Laurel School.”

Learn more and contribute to the conversation at Zygote Press this weekend. Anila Rubiku’s exhibition, T’Aint Nobody’s Business If I Do, opens with a reception at Zygote Press from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, May 6. Regular gallery hours are noon to 4 p.m. Wednesdays & Saturdays, and by appointment.

(Zygote Press) 1410 E. 40th St., 216-621-2900,

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