YES Contemporary, the program dedicated to contemporary artists of El Salvador, celebrates its fifth anniversary. Created by The Robert S. Wennet and Mario Cader-Frech Foundation, the platform has been making exhibitions, loans and publications for half a decade with the aim of expanding and making visible the contemporary Salvadoran scene; In addition to the recognized travel program aimed at bringing international curators closer to the region.

"Black mirror: And Other Third World Reflections", exhibition view.

In September 2014, the foundation created by Rober S. Wennet and Mario Cader-Frech developed the YES Contemporary program. The origin of it arose from the need for support from Salvadoran artists. Thus, the proposal was conceived to provide the potential to enhance professional development, obtain subsidies, and the extension of initiatives and connections related to the global contemporary art scene. Among the most outstanding activities are the invitation of internationally recognized curators: from the founding of YES Contemporary until today more than fifty independent curators from prestigious institutions traveled to El Salvador to be part of the project.

The evolution of the program has been exponential. Earlier this year, with the intention of solidifying curatorial participation, Mario Cader-Frech offered his collection of contemporary Salvadoran art to the YES Contemporary art loan program. The generous donation of Cader-Frech has made the research and circulation of Salvadoran art within the curatorial and institutions circuit around the world extremely accessible; remarkable evolution that the Robert S. Wennet and Mario Cader-Frech Foundation has been promoting for more than 19 years.

“It is rare to find such a dedicated and unique philanthropic approach to supporting the arts. Mario and Robert’s vision is responsive to needs in real time,” said Claire Breukel, YES Contemporary Executive Director. “They are continually researching, visiting and strategizing how to best adapt to the ever changing and growing Salvadoran art field at large,” she added.

The YES Contemporary loan program, now with the new support provided by Cader-Frech, sets in motion thirty artworks of art produced by artists of the region, leaving them available on loan (anywhere in the world). It is thanks to this project that the exhibitions such as Black mirror: And Other Third World Reflections, in FAU Art Galleries, and video show Borders of Freedom, actually exhibited in the Locust Projects in Miami, have become possible (both exhibitions are also part of this loan program).

Within the framework of its fifth anniversary, YES Contemporary organizes a celebration with artists and alumni who have been part of the program, board members and close friends. The meeting will be held in a private event around Art Basel Miami Beach.


Brief history of the foundation

Mario Cader-Frech and Robert S. Wennett met in Washington D.C. in 1991. It is here that Mario initiated the first Salvadoran contemporary art exhibitions at the embassy of El Salvador. In the years to follow Mario collected works of art from Salvadoran artists - many of whom needed travel support – and placed them on exhibition at different Salvadoran diplomatic buildings across the United States. In 2006, Mario teamed up with then Museum of Art of El Salvador to initiate the MARTE Contemporary program, with the special focus of bringing young international artists to do a short residency and exhibit at the museum. A commitment that lasted ten years and included exhibitions by Karl Haendel, Bert Rodriguez, Susan Lee Chun, Abigail Reyes, Marlov Barrios, Naama Tsabar, and many more.

To help guide this vision, Mario Cader-Frech and Robert Wennett work closely with their council comprising Latin American philanthropic experts and Salvadoran arts professionals based both locally and abroad offering key perspectives.