Tampa Screening Of "Unfinished Spaces'' Celebrates Arts Of Cuba

The Tampa Bay Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) hosts a release of the film “Unfinished Spaces” October 5 at 7 pm at the Cuban Club in Ybor City.

The film documents the struggles and passion of three young, visionary architects commissioned by Fidel Castro and Che Guevara to build a National Art School in Cuba in 1961. Their radical, pioneering designs attracted dancers, musicians and artists from across the country. Construction was abruptly halted with the onset of the Cuban Revolution, and to this day the project remains unfinished.

The film includes archival footage from 1960s-era Cuba, including Fidel Castro discussing his plans for the national art schools. It offers a unique window into the history of the arts in Cuba that is not often available to American viewers.

Woven within the historical presentation is a social message about the importance of art in Cuban culture -- and in any culture.

The architects offer an inspiring message about the power of the arts and the need for artists to push forward and create beauty in the face of adversity, be it censorship, oppression or political setbacks.

"We hope the film will offer a new perspective on the role the artist plays in society, and the way art can shape history,'' says Alysa Nahmias, the film's New York-based co-director and co-producer.

Tampa is one of five U.S. locations chosen to showcase the film during its public release in October, partly because of its large population of Cuban-Americans and Latinos. The producers aim to forge new dialogue with creatives, designers and anyone interested in learning more about Cuba's preservation and history.  The film is part of AIA's Archtober, a month-long set of events designed to get the public thinking about the impact of architecture and design.

Other events include an architectural walking tour of downtown Tampa on October 5, a Design Mixer on October 11, a screening of the film Design & Thinking on October 18, a Photography Awards Reception on October 25 and the annual Celebrate Design event on November 1.

Writer: Megan Hendricks
Source: Alysa Nahmias, "Unfinished Spaces''

Read more articles by Megan Hendricks.

Megan Hendricks is a feature writer at 83 Degrees Media in the Tampa Bay region of Florida.
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