The Power of Art and the Fear of Leaders

Some of the artists roughed up and arrested on December 20th. Photos:

HAVANA TIMES – Everything seems to return to “normal” after the repression suffered by several artists on the afternoon of Wednesday, December 20th in the Cuban capital. They were going to enjoy a play in the independent house-gallery El Circulo and suddenly they were victims of a performance by a government that prevents free expression at all costs.

Repressing artists and anyone who outwardly disagrees is the order of the day. Plain clothes agents pushed and dealt blows, while uniformed Police also took part in the arrests; there was a bit of everything. And the artists ended the evening out behind bars. A few hours later several were released and two, Lia Villares and Luis Manuel Otero, were kept prisoner without disclosing their whereabouts.

On Thursday, December 21, Villares and Otero were released. Luis Manuel had been detained at a Police station of San Miguel del Padron and left without any charges or fines.

Lia was reported as missing because her friends toured several stations on Wednesday night and early Thursday and no authorities would provide information on her whereabouts. At the Zapata and C station they were told that she was in Cotorro and when they arrived there, at dawn, the agents at first denied holding her. Finally they admitted to her detention in that station.

To think that a situation like this will not happen again seems a pipedream, especially because recently it has occurred so many times. For the time being, those involved were grateful for the support they received and are committed to demanding that it does not happen again to them or others.

4 thoughts on “The Power of Art and the Fear of Leaders

  • Please recount a synopsis of the play. It’s name as well.

      • As no one is hazarding a reason for the arrests I will offer a guess. Clearly not all artists are repressed if painters of banal scenes are artists. My guess is it was the Bohemianism of Jodorowsky that authorities found irritating. Bohemianism is akin to art for arts sake akin to a cult. Only the cult of socialism is allowed. Like everything this too will pass. We must endure the struggle for equality that is to make possible long life on earth while the environment allows. Good luck to us all.

  • So it was based on the Jodi row sky film? Perhaps one could explicate what about it that might have irritated authorities.


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