Saturday, June 5, 2010

Cuban human rights arts protest projected on Carneigie Hall

NEW YORK - Artist Geandy Pavón took his art-protest “Nemesis” to Carnegie Hall while Cuban singer-composer Silvio Rodriguez held the first of two scheduled concerts in New York City.

During Rodríguez’s performance and as concert goers exited, Pavón digitally projected onto the famous music hall a huge image of Cuban political prisoner Orlando Zapata, who died of a hunger strike in February.

Considered “the voice of the Cuban revolution,” Rodríguez has for decades used his artistic talent and appeal to serve and enable Cuba’s dictatorship and to spread its propaganda. A long-time member of Cuba’s Communist Party and ruling elite, he enjoys privileges denied to most citizens, including most artists.

In Greek mythology, “nemesis” denotes divine justice ─ a memory of persecution.

Zapata, an Afro-Cuban plumber incarcerated for non-violent activities, was protesting appalling prison conditions. His death has elicited worldwide condemnation and become a symbol of the human rights abuses of the Cuban dictatorship.

Pavón has taken his art-protest to the Cuban Mission to the United Nations in New York City, the Cuban Consulate in Barcelona and the Cuban Interests Section in Washington. Born in Cuba and a graduate of Cuba’s National School of Fine Arts, he has lived in exile in New Jersey since 1996.

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