First Dominican immersive art exhibition opens in Santo Domingo

In the presence of the President of the Republic, Luis Abinader, the First Lady, Raquel Arbaje, and numerous personalities, the first immersive art exhibition held in the Dominican Republic was inaugurated and is open to the public as of today, Wednesday, April 6.

Located in a large tent of more than 500 meters installed in the Plaza España in the Colonial Zone of Santo Domingo, the exhibition is dedicated to the Dominican artist Ivan Tovar, the most sought-after artist in the Dominican Republic.

In his words during the opening ceremony, President Luis Abinader assured that, with this inauguration, “we put the culture of our country where it deserves to be: at the top” and added that “this exhibition marks, without a doubt, a before and after in the exhibition conception in our country and in the promotion of our artists inside and outside our borders”.

During the emotional opening ceremony, which took place a few days before the 80th anniversary of the artist’s birth, Ivan Tovar’s family was posthumously awarded the Order of Sanchez, Duarte and Mella.

Likewise, the mayor of the National District, Carolina Mejía, made public the resolution naming a street in the capital with the name of the artist, who was also named Adopted Son of the city.

For his part, the Minister of Tourism, David Collado, named Ivan Tovar posthumous ambassador of Marca País and presented the Ivan Tovar Foundation, organizer of the exhibition, with the Marca País seal.

The purpose of this act is to recognize the transcendence of an artist who exhibited in the 1960s alongside the greatest exponents of surrealism.

As expressed by Héctor José Rizek, member of the Ivan Tovar Foundation, organizer of the exhibition, “From my heart, I trust that Ivan is watching from heaven this meeting in his honor, because I still believe that our country is indebted to him and, today, we want that debt to begin to be paid”.

A new way of approaching art
Tovar Surrealismo Vivo is a sensorial experience that will allow not only to enjoy the personal and professional career of Iván Tovar, the most universal artist of the Dominican Republic, but also to enter into his work thanks to new technologies and contemplate his world with a new look.

“We are betting on the talent of a local artist who deserves international recognition, to create an experience with its own identity, where the history of the country, the universality of the artist and the new possibilities of virtuality are combined,” explained Rizek.

Thanks to the efforts of the Iván Tovar Foundation, an institution dedicated to spreading the artist’s legacy, his work can be visited by thousands of people and contemplated in a different way.

For the exhibition, a space full of audiovisual content has been developed, equipping the 550 square meters of immersive exhibition with state-of-the-art video projection and multichannel audio systems.

For the creation of the projections and visual material, the starting point was a selection of approximately 400 images including works, letters and photographs, which have been fully integrated by a team of specialists in immersive projection and audio content. “Few immersive exhibitions are fortunate enough to have such a large number of works,” said Rizek, while thanking numerous collectors for their collaboration. This will allow visitors to navigate through the artist’s life and immerse themselves in his peculiar iconography.

Also speaking at the event was María Amalia León, art patron and director of Centro León, who pointed out the importance of promoting and supporting national artists. “Because support for the cultural sector is not only intended to promote and democratize the arts. These contributions have made it possible to generate higher quality cultural content, create identity and, most importantly, enrich the lives of thousands of people with their beauty and uniqueness.”

For his part, President Abinader ratified his commitment to support the national cultural sector, one of the hardest hit by the pandemic: “We will continue to work tirelessly, opening doors for creators and making sure they have the opportunity to shine with their own light, in our country and around the world,” he said.
The exhibition will be open to the public until July 6.

The exhibition has been sponsored by: Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Tourism, Mayor’s Office of the National District, Banco Popular, Banreservas, Listín Diario, Ritmo Social and Kah Kow.

Why an immersive exhibition?

Immersive art exhibitions have gained popularity in recent years because they allow the public to experience the paintings, understand the works and contemplate them from another perspective. They are one of the new cultural formats with the greatest growth in recent years, as they use the latest technologies in 3D and 2D projection, lighting and sound, so that viewers have a totally different approach to the works than in traditional museums.

Using video mapping and other technologies, new generations will see Tovar’s work up close and discover new perspectives of his work, his life and his poetic and literary works. Tovar’s work stands out for being transgressive and going beyond the conventional. His imaginary transcends the boundaries of surrealism, positioning three-dimensionality as the transversal axis of his dreamlike universe.

Tickets are on sale at the website Tickets will cost RD$100 for children, students and seniors over 65. For adults the cost will be RD$250.

Schedule and location

From April 6 to June 6, 2022
It will be open Monday through Thursday from 10 am to 7 pm and Fridays and Saturdays from 10 am to
9 pm. The tent is located at Plaza España, in the Colonial City.

Other activities around Ivan Tovar’s 80th anniversary

On March 28, Ivan Tovar’s 80th birthday, an exhibition with an important selection of drawings by the artist was inaugurated at the Museo de Las Casas Reales. The exhibition is open to the general public. Together with the immersive exhibition, this circuit adds to the well-deserved recognition that this great figure of our art receives, on the occasion of his 80th birthday.

In addition, a children’s book, Las bestias de Ivan, based on the “bestiary” of fantastic creatures created by the artist Iván Tovar, will soon be presented.


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