Rena Effendi - Between Here and Paradise; Havana Cuba
Rena Effendi, documented many of the neighbourhoods and enclaves that appear in the work of Padura and other Cuban artists. In her photos of Havana, we see a city almost frozen in time. Relics of another era dot the streets, like props from a period film. Effendi also depicts the city’s lively street life, photographing people in motion against a backdrop of vivid murals and Havana’s signature pastel colors. Cuba is neither a paradise nor a hell but, rather more of a purgatory, where some of us have the possibility of salvation.
*the woman with the white fan is so boss; I love her.
By Deborah Frempong
In a world that places centrality on the male figure, Afrofuturist movements have been dramatically promoted by women in many forms of media, with perhaps the most popular icon today being Janelle Monae, lighting up our screens with her futuristic themes that are largely focused on androids and quite recently, ‘electric ladies’. The expression of mainstream artists within this fantastical realm, however, is not completely new. Older artists such as Grace Jones, Erykah Badoe, Labelle have over the years created personas that have escaped the trappings of popularized constructions of black identity, be it through their androgynous looks or mystic creations.