I listened recently to a veteran describe how doing art helped her heal from decades of PTSD, after being raped and then discounted and humiliated while she was in the service. It brought to mind the wonderful community art projects we visited in Cuba.
Art, including music and dance, of course, is everywhere in Cuba. Paintings and sculptures can be seen in alleys, on the street, in restaurants and hotels, in people’s homes, in galleries, and in museums. The post-revolution section of the Museum of Art in Havana is one of the best collections I’ve ever seen.
Cubans seem to understand the place of art in society, not just for self expression, but also for community development and cohesion and celebration. I’m sure it’s used for healing as well. Certainly there is always a place for children to do art.
Here are a few photos from 2 community art projects we visited in Havana, including Hamel’s Alley, founded in 1990 by Salvador Gonzales Escalona, and El Tanque/Muraleando, which converted trashed-out neighborhood and abandoned water tank into a vibrant community center.