Cuban film posters were recently included on UNESCO‘s Memory of the World list, which aims to preserve humanity’s documentary heritage.
In Cuba, the collection of silkscreen prints of Cuban film posters holds no secrets for Sara Vega, a graphic designer at the Cinémathèque in Havana. Colourful, abstract, pop or comic, there’s something for everyone, she explains: “It’s a collection that brings together film posters from all genres and all regions of the world. There are Japanese, Chinese, Egyptian and Swedish posters. There are important films, less important ones, socialist posters, capitalist posters and, of course, Cuban posters.
Cubans have long had a close relationship with the cinema, but nothing represents this love of films better than the unique posters created to promote them. According to Sara Vega, “posters in the streets used to be advertising, but now people put up posters in their homes to show what they love, what they can see every day and never get tired of seeing”. She added: “I wrote recently that as soon as people replace the painting of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with a poster for the film Stolen Kisses, the battle will be won.
Sara is responsible, along with Nelson Ponce, for some 3,000 items in the collection, and they are delighted to have contributed to the digitisation and conservation of these works.