You might have seen this book knocking around in a few of this season’s images we’ve been sharing.
‘Cuba 1959’ is a first-hand account of photojournalist Burt Glinn’s experiences during the Cuban revolution. It has some of the most iconic imagery of Fidel Castro as well as many photographs from the revolution at ground level. There’s a lot of soldiers in the photographs but also people in the streets, workers and families which is where our SS17 season takes its inspiration from. The mixture of military uniform, workwear and casual clothing of mid-century Cuba.
There’s some very atmospheric imagery, casually dressed residents in gunfights in the street, mass protests and Batista’s soldiers detaining Castro supporting rebels in military occupied offices. Away from the action are soldiers and militia during their time off relaxing on sofas in hotel lobbies, celebrations of Castro’s speeches in the street and people during their day to day lives during the uncertain but fuelled time.
The book closes with Castro sat alone at the presidential office’s table, signature cigar in hand having taken power in Cuba, potent stuff.
The images play out like a Hollywood movie as you flick through, everyone looks styled and posed, but that was Burt Gilnn, a legend of photojournalism who captured some of the best-known images in history.
If you see it anywhere we recommend having a look through.