Forces of Architecture in Havana: Islamic, Baroque, Art Deco, Functionalism

 Architecture  Comments Off on Forces of Architecture in Havana: Islamic, Baroque, Art Deco, Functionalism
Oct 172014

Arabic/Islamic influences in Old Havana.

The forces of Spanish Colonial, Arabic, ecletic and art deco are strongly apparent in the architecture of Havana. Interestingly though, the architecture did not evolve from the indigenous population, but rather from the culture of invading nations and what they needed to achieve at a particular time in history. The Spanish invaded and later the Americans dominated politics of the right wing dictatorship of Batista and industry in Cuba.  The outsider forces on arrival in Cuba built forts as a line of defense and, later on, residential and civic buildings in the style of the period of time in which they were constructed.  Architecture was adapted to the new Cuban way of life, raw materials and climate. Wealth had masses to do with the shape and form of  architecture that evolved in Havana. Cuba’s strategic position in the Caribbean was also an influence.  Havana at its highpoint became one of the greatest cities in Latin America. Continue reading »

The Havana Guide by Eduardo Luis Rodriguez

 Architecture, Cuban Art Books  Comments Off on The Havana Guide by Eduardo Luis Rodriguez
Oct 142014


For the visitor to Havana, Cuba, one of the most striking features of the city is its architecture.  The architecture of Havana is an echo of a time of cultural splendor and creativity.  Some would say this state of mind still exists today.  A city framed by the beauty of its architecture, both modern and historical and its weary decay.  But fear not, a massive reconstruction and renovation project has been underway for years, restoring what is lovely in Havana. Continue reading »

Dec 262012


Lovers of Cuban art and architecture will not want to miss out on this book:   “Revolution of Forms: Cuba’s Forgotten Art Schools” by John A. Loomis with a forward by Gerardo Mosquera, first published in 1999. This book, the updated edition is now available in paperback. John A. Loomis’  book takes a look at the state of art, architecture, culture and political ideology in the Cuba of the 1960s which is symbolized and collides together in the design of one of its greatest works of architecture, the  Escuelas Nacionals de Arte. Cuba’s most outstanding achievement in the world of architecture was to be the Escuelas Nacionales de Arte (National Art Schools) located just outside of Havana.  Continue reading »

Unfinished Spaces

 Architecture, Cuban Art News  Comments Off on Unfinished Spaces
Oct 212012

Photo courtesy of: John A. Loomis, Source Wikipedia

It was 1961, over a game of golf at the Havana Country Club just outside of the city,  that Fidel Castro and Che Guevara discussed and made plans to build National Art School of Cuba on the grounds of the Club.  Building of the School began but was later abandoned because of a lack of government funding and the political climate.  The buildings still stand today and are regarded as an architectural marvel. Continue reading »