Highlights from SAHARA: Cuba

by Jacqueline Spafford and Jeffrey Klee, SAHARA Co-Editors | May 10, 2016
For this month’s SAHARA feature, we celebrate the restoration of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba by highlighting Cuban content. This includes photographs taken during the SAH tour to the island in 2012. The collection is particularly strong in images of twentieth-century buildings both before and after the Cuban Revolution but also includes material from the colonial period. 

To visit this collection and others in SAHARA go to: http://sahara.artstor.org/library/portals/SAHARA/rloginSAH.html

And to learn more about contributing to SAHARA, visit:

Diego Velásquez House, Santiago, Cuba, said to be the oldest house in Cuba, built 1516-1530. John C. Blew, photographer.

Hotel Florida, Havana, Cuba, begun 1836, converted to hotel c. 1856. Throughout the 20th century, this structure had many functions (public offices, warehouse, residential, bank) until it was remodeled and restored by the Office of the City Historian under the architects Noris Bacallao, Lina Alba Díaz, and Rafael Palli. Erica Morawski, photographer, 2012.

Church of the Savior of the World, Havana, Cuba, 1850. John C. Blew, photographer.

Mira y Rosich, Ricardo Galbis, and Vincente Llorenas, Hotel Varadero, Varadero, Cuba, 1949-50. Erica Morawski, photographer, 2012.

Aquiles Capablanca, Office of the Comptroller (currently Ministry of the Interior), Plaza de la Revolución, Havana, Cuba, 1953. Image of Ernesto "Che" Guevara added later. Erica Morawski, photographer, 2012.

Octavio Buigas, José Martí Sporting Arena, Havana, Cuba, 1960. John C. Blew, photographer.

Ricardo Porro, Roberto Gottardi, and Vittorio Garatti, National Art Schools (on site of former Havana Country Club), Havana, Cuba, 1961-65. John C. Blew, photographer.

Antonio Quintana, House of the Cosmonauts, Varadero, Cuba, 1975. Originally a place for rest for cosmonauts, now a hotel. Erica Morawski, photographer, 2012.

Founded in 1940, the Society of Architectural Historians is an international nonprofit membership organization that promotes the study, interpretation and conservation of architecture, design, landscapes and urbanism worldwide. SAH serves a network of local, national and international institutions and individuals who, by profession or interest, focus on the built environment and its role in shaping contemporary life. SAH promotes meaningful public engagement with the history of the built environment through advocacy efforts, print and online publications, and local, national and international programs.

SAH thanks The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation
for its operating support.
Society of Architectural Historians
1365 N. Astor Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610
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