Cuba, officially the Republic of Cuba, is a country comprising the island of Cuba, as well as Isla de la Juventud and several minor archipelagos. Cuba is located where the northern Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico, and Atlantic Ocean meet.
U.S. West dealing with record heat, Senate Democrats agree to $3.5 trillion healthcare and antipoverty plan, and this is the ‘best place’ to live in America.
Crumbling pastel-colored facades line its streets, parked vintage cars evoke times past, live music permeates the air. Welcome to Havana, home to an overwhelming energy. Situated along the Straits of Florida, the capital of Cuba has been through several identities: Spanish colonial settlement, mobster rule in the 1930s, glamour of the 1950s, Cuban revolution and, most recently, a cultural renaissance.
Havana’s bold, provocative approach to art, cuisine and entertainment—as well as the eclectic blend of African, French, Spanish and North American influences—including its range of architecture styles from the sixteenth century to the modern day, confer this epic city with a legendary status on par with the world’s greatest cities. While some of the building are in disrepair, the beauty of the baroque, neoclassical and art deco features triumphs.
The iconic Copa Room cabaret that hosted Ginger Rogers and Abbott and Costello still stands. The Gran Teatro de la Habana, built in the early twentieth century, is now home to the Cuban National Ballet. Habana Vieja is undergoing a massive restoration to its former glory. Havana could be seen as a work-in-progress, but it is more a testament to its never-ending determination to improve and progress, which might be the allure that attracts so many visitors. So take a seat at an authentic paladar (family-run restaurant) and enjoy the vibrant evolution of Havana.
Pamela Ruiz came to Cuba in the 1990s and fell in love, both with the country and her husband, Cuban artist Damian Aquiles. Formerly a location scout for photography shoots, she soon began to turn her attention to art, specifically bridging the international art world and Cuba.
Cuba, a place known for it’s unique mix of cultural and artistic influences along with it’s diverse architecture, repeatedly drew Eastman to work there throughout the years. Eastman’s lavish monumental photographs of the opulent colonial and Art Deco architecture of Havana impart on the viewer magnificently decorated rooms bathed in romantic Baroque light.
Seemingly caught in the rift of time and bearing the resulting mark making, these decadent and warm inviting spaces seemingly take on the role of storyteller, serving witness to a time now passed.
For five decades, Michael Eastman has explored the interiors and facades in diverse geographical locations producing photographs unified by their visual precision, monumentality, and painterly use of color. Eastman’s affection for the vernacular is reflected in the resultant photographs, rich in narrative and embodied with an intrinsic sense of place and time.
Born in 1947 in St. Louis, Missouri, Eastman studied at the University of Wisconsin. He is the recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts Grant, National Addy Award, and a Paris Photo BMW Finalist Prize. His images have appeared in Time, Life, Art in America, New York Times, and American Photographer. Eastman’s work is in numerous private and public collections, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA; Art Institute of Chicago, IL; Los Angeles County Museum of Art, CA; High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA; Saint Louis Art Museum, MO; and the International Center of Photography, NY. His publications include Havana (Prestel, 2011), Vanishing America (Rizzoli, 2008), and Horses (Knopf, 2003).
Protests against February’s military coup are only growing, even as the army becomes more murderous. The economy is paralysed. What can be done to put the country back together?
Away from the burning glare of the Caribbean sun live some unusual animals. Cuba is home to the Hutia, a small dog sized rodent as well as plenty of marauding crabs!
Hutias are moderately large cavy-like rodents of the family Capromyidae that inhabit the Caribbean Islands. Twenty species of hutia have been identified but at least a third are extinct.
Gecarcinus ruricola is a species of terrestrial crab. It is the most terrestrial of the Caribbean land crabs, and is found from western Cuba across the Antilles as far east as Barbados. Common names for G. ruricola include the purple land crab, black land crab, red land crab, and zombie crab.
Havana is Cuba’s capital city. Spanish colonial architecture in its 16th-century Old Havana core includes the Castillo de la Real Fuerza, a fort and maritime museum. The National Capitol Building is an iconic 1920s landmark. Also in Old Havana is the baroque Catedral de San Cristóbal and Plaza Vieja, whose buildings reflect the city’s vibrant architectural mix.
Cuba, officially the Republic of Cuba is a country comprising the island of Cuba, as well as Isla de la Juventud and several minor archipelagos. Cuba is located in the northern Caribbean where the Caribbean Sea, Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean meet.
The Great Books presents: John J. Miller is joined by Missy Andrews of the Center for Literary Education to discuss Ernest Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea.
The Old Man and the Sea is a short novel written by the American author Ernest Hemingway in 1951 in Cuba, and published in 1952. It was the last major work of fiction written by Hemingway that was published during his lifetime. One of his most famous works, it tells the story of Santiago, an aging Cuban fisherman who struggles with a giant marlin far out in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Cuba.
Filmed and Edited by: Víctor A. Hernández
This is a short film from a 15 days trip around Cuba in 2019.
From the peaceful countryside of Vinales to the busy timeworn streets of Havana, every corner in Cuba is filled with the joy of the charming cuban people, with a mix of origins and cultures, offering a variety of afro-caribbean and latin music and dances, which you can enjoy with great cocktails and best cigars in the world.
Places visited: Havana, Viñales, Playa Girón, Cienfuegos, El Nicho, Trinidad, Santa Clara.