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Viva Cuba! photography exhibition

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Last chance to catch this show of Cuban photography featuring German artist Werner Pawlok

‘Life is short, but it barely takes a second to smile’ is a Cuban proverb quoted in a book by Werner Pawlok that accompanies the exhibition Viva Cuba! at Lumas Gallery in London.

That life is short, and legacy and history and culture too, is implicit in the photographs that hang around the gallery. They are mostly of colonial houses that have been sectioned off into multiple apartments and are now lived in by those who cannot afford to repaint the crumbling walls, or fix the cracked windows.

Decay and beauty coexist in every photograph, with references and relics from the past: Cadillacs, Chevys and Buicks whizz by, china faces of Mao hang on the wall, a vintage radio sits by a bed. Then there are the human signs, empty chairs with indented cushions, washing on a line, flowers; but no humans.

Viva Cuba! is at Lumas Gallery until 31 October, 10am – 7pm. Entry free

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