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date: 12 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This article suggests that the “recuperation” of Soviet remains and Cubans’ recollections of the Soviets are less significant than an exploration of everydayness in the present—real or reconstructed, in the shadow of the depleted utopic dimensions that were supposed to have molded it. With a focus on photographic series by Alejandro González Méndez; Abel Arcos Soto’s novel 9550: Una posible interpretación del azúl (9550: A Possible Interpretation of the Blue, 2014); and Carlos Machado Quintela’s film La obra del siglo (The Project of the Century, 2015), this project examines how the works of these artists dissect the utopic mechanism, woven into the international fabric of the Cuban-Soviet imaginary, by questioning the past’s framing of the future and the seemingly arbitrary implementation of concrete data and visual rhetoric to create historical narratives.

Keywords: Cuban-Soviet imaginary, Carlos Machado Quintela, Alejandro González Méndez, Abel Arcos Soto, utopian cities, memorialization, Ostalgie, socialist realism

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