Living ‘la vida digital:’ Cuban filmmaking between tradition and change

  1. 1. Soren Triff

    Bristol Community College

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Cuba is experiencing a new surge of creative talent that is taking shape precisely now. This paper studies from a cultural perspective the factors that are making this possible. Cuba has a tradition in a strong filmography and film is also traditionally the favored medium used to argue and engage in a critical dialogue with Revolutionary power. The economy has changed before; also a new generation of filmmakers has joined the “old guard” before without unexpected changes. What is happening this time? This paper argues that this time the difference is that several things are going on at the same time: economic change, generational change, and technological change. Although these changes are an on going process that started more than twenty years ago, it is now more and more obvious with the passing of the President of the Cuban Film Institute last year in the middle of a process of economic modernization. The post-Soviet Cuban society has been approached by artists since the early nineties. New economic measures have allowed artists to be in closer relationship with the global cultural industry. But a variety of digital tools are being used by a new generation of artists since the mid-nineties with unexpected results. Artists create their work digitally; they communicate among themselves digitally; they also communicate with the outside world and advertise their work by digital means. Finally, they communicate directly with their audience. This is particularly important for young filmmakers who now can enter the “market” in equal terms with well-known directors. The paper will focus on some events in support to the this new “vida digital,” and on the work of some filmmakers from “old masters” like Fernando Perez moving toward independent filmmaking to artists in a dialogue with cultural authorities to partake in the modernization of the film industry to new names like Alejandro Brugues entering the global cultural market with his work included in the horror comedy anthology “The ABCs of the Dead 2.”

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Conference Info

In review

Caribbean Digital - 2014

Hosted at Barnard College, Columbia University

New York, New York, United States

Dec. 4, 2014 - Dec. 5, 2014

31 works by 38 authors indexed

Series: Caribbean Digital (1)

Organizers: Caribbean Digital

  • Keywords: None
  • Language: English
  • Topics: None