Long time Highland Park resident David Antebi is exhibiting photos from Cuba in the Main Hall Display Case at the Highland Park Public Library, 31 North Fifth Avenue, from September 1 through September 30, 2016. He will talk about Cuba: Then and Now on Thursday, September 8 at 7:00 PM at the library.
After 50 years of the US embargo on Cuba, the travel restrictions were lifted last year. David Antebi and his wife Paula took advantage of this opportunity and booked an eight-day trip in January, 2016 with a group called Road Scholar. The trip focused on the arts. The photos in the display case are a sample of his attempt to document what he experienced.
“We visited old Havana, rural areas, tobacco and organic vegetable farms, and a luxury coastal hotel,” Antebi said. “Candid portraits were taken to capture images of people at work. Where ever we went – bus stops, the market place- we were greeted with music and dance groups. We witnessed the creative spirit visiting local artists galleries, dance studios and a modern art museum where we had a chance to mingle and interact with Cubans.”
According to Antebi, Cuban politics were evident at a book fair where pamphlets, and books on revolutionary theory, biographies on Fidel Castro, and Che Guevara, and medals from the Revolution were displayed. Also on display, were vintage music albums of the ’50 and the ’60 from famous Cuban singers of that time period. David and Paula, long time residents of Highland Park, witnessed tourists from all over the world crowding the lobby of the historic Hotel National located in old Havana where they stayed to experience the old and the new Cuba. “For the short time we visited Cuba we witnessed the physical devastation created by the embargo but were captured by the vibrant spirit of the people for life,” Antebi said.