The week of July 11th was unpredictable for Cubans given the massive protests that began in San Antonio de los Baños and then spread across the island of Cuba. In my personal case, that week was even more special because I met a great friend. In the midst of the mixed feelings of Cubans living on this side of history, and in the midst of the cries of Homeland and Life (the new slogan that counteracts the historic Homeland or Death of the Cuban dictatorship) there I met Medina. He was in Union Square with a megaphone in hand, drawing our strong thoughts with his words and shouting phrases that all of us present were repeating with great force.

Several days ago I finally went to his studio to interview him for the final report on the artists’ experience during COVID. Upon arriving at Cifarra’s headquarters, a project born during the lockdown, I was surprised by the kindness, rarely found during these days, with which they received me. Medina currently directs, produces, and delivers his person to anyone who gets close to him and gets to connect with his ideas. In this place, despite the August heat, one breathes fresh air, freedom, and the desire to express everything that passes through one’s mind; with honesty and no filters. The extensive conversation we had diverted into areas that were not on my list of questions, and it fell back into the oddity of having lived a period in life that had allowed us to think so much about ourselves. To build a different reality over the basis of the uncertainty that has accompanied us and still accompanies us sometimes has a great outcome.

The Homeland gave me a friend.

Cifarra’s logo

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