In the December issue of e-flux journal, Ernesto Hernández Busto puts the breaks on the unwarranted enthusiasm surrounding the "post-Castro" era that is supposedly dawning in Cuba. He suggests that official repression and artistic conformity will continue to plague the island nation for some time to come. An excerpt:
Very few Cuban artists of the Generación Jinetera will not show solidarity toward an artist targeted by the state security services, since this would not only mean repression and ideological ostracism, but also market restrictions; they are unwilling to jeopardize access to collectors, tourist visits to their studios, the privileges granted by the state to their artistic and real estate projects, their permission to travel, and their financial rewards. A malignant fusion of communist and capitalist instruments of power dominate the “postideological” space that Cuba has supposedly become since December 17, 2014.
Bruguera’s podium at Revolution Square remained empty, although for reasons different from what Eiriz’s images showed at the end of the 1960s. Around that podium there has been a very loud silence that speaks volumes about the machinery of police and institutional control that should not continue to rule the destiny of Cuban art.
Image: José A. Toirac, Eternity (2000).