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Picture Cimetière de Colon à La Havane (1)
- Alfredo Sarabia
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- Cimetière de Colon à La Havane (1)
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The son of a photographer, Alfredo Sarabia, born in Havana in 1986, is a graduate of the Academia San Alejandro de Cuba and the Instituto Superior de Arte in Havana. He took part in a number of group exhibitions at the Ludwig de Cuba Foundation. The Fototeca de Cuba gave him a solo show in 2009.
Alfredo Sarabia's work is haunted by anxiety bordering on nightmare. His series are driven by a need to plumb his identity and his uncertain future. One of his series – still in progress – is a meditation on the omnipresence in Cuba of the bust of José Martí: writer, theoretician, and founder in 1891 of the Cuban Revolutionary Party, Martí enjoys national hero status as one of the fathers of Cuban independence. Busts made of plaster, concrete and white plastic are everywhere, from Cuba's primary schools to village and town squares to Parliament. Their condition, however, is deteriorating; and faced with the ravages of time, Sarabia has set himself the task of drawing up a black and white compilation, a kind of endless inventory.
His most striking series – the one in which he challenges himself most directly – is the one on display here. Keeping a delicate balance as he walks along the wall of the Colón cemetery in Havana – the biggest in all Latin America – he simultaneously photographs the domain of the dead and the living city around it. In the cemetery we see a man dragging a cross along, in the street another man telephoning. And we follow Sarabia's progress thanks to his shadow, which he catches on each side of the wall, like that of a tightrope walker permanently in danger of falling.
He is currently working on a new project involving the horizon. As if desperately wondering what his own horizon is.