“Cuba Is,” a new show at the Annenberg Space for Photography in Los Angeles that opens today and runs until March 4, 2018, includes more than 120 images exploring the complexities of life on the island. The show presents contemporary and archival images from a diverse group of photographers, many of whom were born or lived on the island, or have worked on longterm projects there. Their work investigates subjects ranging from underground youth culture and ballet to life in the countryside and in Cuban communities off of the island, depicting “aspects of Cuba not easily accessed by foreigners, and sometimes not even by Cubans themselves,” the Annenberg writes in a statement. The Annenberg Foundation commissioned several photographers to create new images for the show, and a film, also on view, documents the making of these commissions. Included in the show are photographs from Elliott Erwitt, Leysis Quesada Vera, Raúl Cañibano, Tria Giovan, Michael Dweck, Michael Christopher Brown, Luis Gispert and Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb, among others. The exhibition is part of Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA, an initiative exploring the relationship between Latin American and Latino art and the city of Los Angeles.
“Cuba has had an outsized influence on our shores—through waves of immigrants and through the music and art and politics they’ve carried with them,” says Annenberg Foundation Chairman Wallis Annenberg, in a statement. “That’s why this exhibit is so compelling and so urgently important. Cuba has changed America—and now it’s changing itself, before our very eyes.”