One of the true joys of going on a people-to-people tour in Cuba was the fascinating look inside the real life and culture of Cubans. Our first cultural visit occurred on the very day we arrived in Havana after a charter flight from Miami that morning. We were met at the airport by our fabulous, charismatic Cuban guide Abel, and taken to see the work and community art of Cuba’s most celebrated ceramic artist, José Rodriguez Fuster, at his outdoor ceramic fantasyland “Fusterlandia”.
A step inside “Fusterlandia” is like taking a walk inside a Disneyland of art. The entire community surrounding José Fuster’s studio and home is decorated in Fuster’s unique style of mixing painting and ceramic and it is utterly surreal.
Fuster began transforming Jaimanitas, a community on the northwestern side of Havana, over thirty years ago when he moved to the run-down neighborhood and set up his studio. As Fuster’s work became world-famous, he decided it was time to give back to his community. Fuster followed his dreams by creating “Fusterlandia“, a living, growing community art museum that began from his studio and has spread out around the entire neighborhood. The community art project now incorporates over 50 houses in the neighborhood in which the residents have allowed Fuster to use their homes, walls, and benches as an artists’ canvas. Fuster confesses he was inspired by some of Europe’s great artists and every day he continues his quest to make Fusterlandia even better and more impressive. Already, it is quite a site to see!
The center of Fusterlandia is of course José Fuster’s studio. Unfortunately when we arrived the sun was soaring high in the sky thus some of my photos were over-exposed. Yet I decided to include them all here in order to give a perspective of the massive size and scope of Fusterlandia. It is quite an amazing place.
Come, take a walk with me inside Fusterlandia, a place of brilliant color, art and creativity. It is certain to blow you away.
Inside Fuster’s compound there is art as far as the eye can see and beyond one’s imagination.
It was a hot day and the sun was beating down upon us. Yet that didn’t stop me from wandering aimlessly around the inside of Fuster’s studio to view his amazing pieces of art. The studio also sells small pieces of ceramic art and paintings as well as larger more expensive works of art. Here we get the chance to meet and talk with Fuster’s son about his famous father.
Up upon the roof, you can see the enormity of Fusterlandia as well as the blue of the sea. It is an incredibly inspiring place that has brought the entire community together and given them pride and joy.
To learn more about Fusterlandia, check out this great piece and video on the website Havana Cultura.
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Cuba looks interesting. how about some Cuban foo next post =)
In the small town near Santa Clara in Cuba we saw something similar on a much smaller scale. I wonder if it was the same artist or someone inspired by him. Very cool pics!
Such amazing art work. The photo of the little boy with the art is extraordinary.
Incredible place, not even an inch is spared… art everywhere … 🙂
Great photos of some amazing art, Nicole! What an incredible amount of work has been put into that place. I’d go crazy with my camera there! I especially love the bench of hearts with the little boy!
Thank you so much for the grand tour! Amazing work there…
A little like Gaudi and obviously inspired, Nicole. I love the chequerboard king, and isn’t that little boy is adorable? 🙂
A fun place to visit for sure. A friend who visited Cuba some months back bought 4 of his paintings which are perfect in her house.
Wow, I bet the paintings are spectacular! If only I could have afforded some myself!!!
Did you go to the studio across the street? I actually liked that work better and it wasn’t nearly as expensive.
Well, I’ve tried for 2 days to load these marvelous pictures. My internet is sooooo slow lately. The full moon causes strong wind, and believe it or not it slows down my internet. Anyway, tonight I can view most of the pictures and they are incredible. I can’t “like” your post though, because it won’t load. So here is a BIG “LOVE!” 🙂
No problem! The internet in Cuba was insanely slow! I know how frustrating that is!
What an incredible place to visit! 🙂
Yes it was! 🙂
Reblogged this on Just Go Places.
This looks amazing Nicole. When I go to Cuba I am going to pick your brain about what is there…and now I am more determined than ever to get there
Yes you do Jo! I just loved Cuba and want to go back!
Reblogged this on Libera mente viaggiare.
Thanks for the reblog!
Does anyone have an email address or telephone number for Jose Fuster? I’m leading a cultural exchange group to Havana next month, and would like to give him some business. Thank you, Margy
I don’t have the email address or phone number and I briefly searched on google and couldn’t find one either. You could always try calling Insight Cuba, the tour group I went with, and see if they would share the information. Or else any other local in Cuba would certainly be able to help.