Fototeca de Cuba, Cuba’s national gallery of photography where we met with its director, Nelson Ramirez de Arellano Conde http://www.liudmilanelson.com/. Under the blue light of the building’s tinted glass windows, Ramirez spoke frankly with our group about Cuba’s flaws as he traced the history of the art and science of photography in Cuba through slides. As an artist, he uses photography to criticize and celebrate the Cuban condition. According to Ramirez, photography as a medium can be in conflict with itself as either an objective documentation of reality or purely art.
Despite his modestly, Ramirez’s own work is stunning. His photography juxtaposes images of past and present, reality and fantasy, communism and capitalism. It is a visual commentary that is both stunning and purposeful.