" I have no personal memories of what, if anything of my life until I was about 7 years old. Born in Havana, Cuba, I was displaced at a young age by my parent’s decision to immigrate to the United States, a traumatic experience that shaped my life and artistic perspective. At the heart of my work is a continuous exercise in the search for my humanity due to the ramifications of assimilation, which includes repudiation or denial of one’s native culture and identity. I was raised in Miami as a multi-ethnic Cuban woman, an immigrant in a city of extremes, evident inequities in income, education and jobs. In many ways, my work is rooted in the history of the United States, in terms of what is left out in the stories that are told. “
Rosa Naday Garmendia is an artist and educator producing work at the nexus of contemporary art and activism. She keeps one foot in Miami (most of the time) and another in Havana, Cuba (as much as possible), where she was born. Her interest in art began at a very young age, as a form of escapism. That interest evolved into various post-secondary studies in several institutions: University of South Florida, Parsons School of Design, University of Miami, and the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale.
Her work explores issues such as identity, race and social justice, she believes in the power of art to move people to action. Through years of multidisciplinary practice, Rosa Naday has utilized different aesthetic strategies balancing concept and message while employing a wide range of media, including installation, sculpture, public art, printmaking, digital art, painting, drawing, collage, and mural painting. She is committed to creativity, activism, and social change. Hers is a kind of social practice; she uses art as a vehicle to affect social change by raising awareness, building solidarity and working with individuals, communities, and institutions in the process.
Rosa Naday has exhibited in prestigious national and international institutions including Corcoran School of Art and Design, Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts & Culture, the 12th, 13th and 14th Biennale de La Habana, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, (UMOCA), Museum of Contemporary Art North Miami, African Heritage Cultural Arts Center in Miami and Art and cultural Center/Hollywood among others.
She has traveled as an artist and cultural ambassador in international cultural exchanges, artist residencies, and exhibition programs in Suriname, Antigua, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Belize, and Cuba with Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator. This experience has allowed her to connect to a broad community of artist that share creative ideals, fuel the creative process, and support each other while promoting a healthy and equitable world.
She is the recipient of the MIA Stipend Award (2022), Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant (2022 and 2019), Artist Access Grant (2021, 2019, and 2012), Wavemaker Grant (2020), Direct Support to Artist Grant, Oolite Arts (2019), The Ellies Creator Award (2018), South Florida Cultural Consortium (2018), and Diaspora Vibe Cultural Arts Incubator Catalyst Grant (2018).
Residencies include Oolite Arts Home and Away Residency program, Equal Justice Thematic International Residency, Vermont Studio Center artist Residency, ProjectArt, and Art Center South Florida.
She has kept a studio practice since 2004, the Bakehouse Art Center, ArtCenter/SouthFlorida (Oolite Arts), Laundromat Art Space, and currently at DVCAI 164 Studios. Since 2008, she balances her studio practice with her position as a museum educator and thought leader at the Perez Art Museum Miami. Rosa Naday speaks English, Spanish and Haitian Kreyol. Through the discourse of artistic practice, she continues to reaffirm her place in a larger community that transcends socially imposed geographical and ethnic borders envisioning alternative futures for humanity.