TITLE : CUBA 2012
SERIES
AUTHOR : GABI BEN AVRAHAM

 

When I started taking street photography more seriously, I discovered Gabi Ben Avraham, and he became one of my major influences among what I would define as contemporary social photographers. Nowadays, many of us are familiar with his photographs filled with vibrant colors and high contrasts, but I wanted to share this particular body of work, which is one of his early projects. Cuba is one of those photographic destinations that we have seen portrayed thousands of times, but Gabi Ben Avraham’s black and white Cuba has always struck me as interesting. Firstly, because the photos are in black and white, avoiding one of the common clichés of “Havana” colors, and also because of the wide-angle focal length used, which introduces lens distortion. Additionally, the compositions with sometimes irregular framings remind me of the best of Robert Frank. So, I believe that you will also enjoy this work, which the author himself describes in this way:

Those who visit Cuba experience a strong feeling of travelling in time, of people living in a bubble disconnected from the Western world as we know it. Far from abundance and comfort, distant from the mighty communication industry and the consuming culture, they live the human side of life as opposed to the industrial and mechanical side. Communication is face to face, people are outside, in the street most of the time, there are very poor resources, everything crumbles, severe poverty. This is their world, and they live it to the full. Nonetheless, they seem strong and maintain their joie de vivre”

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