Yaniel Tolentino

Yaniel Tolentino

Photo: Yaniel Tolentino.

Tobacco men

From the age of 8, Felix works in tobacco. He is already 60. The time in his eyes and the sun on his skin show how life is like in the plantations. They are men of tobacco in Pinar del Río, who dedicate almost the whole year to the crop, among the sowing, cutting, picking and drying. An annoying glue adds to his hands and he only will be able to remove it with soil. Photo: Yaniel Tolentino. Photo: Yaniel Tolentino. Photo: Kaloian.

Photo: Yaniel Tolentino.

Regla 330th

Regla, with its sea, its people and its spirituality, celebrates  its 330 years this month. This overseas village, whose native name "Guaicanamar" means "facing the sea", was founded on March 3, 1687. Its history began with the donation of a piece of land from the Marquis Don Pedro Recio de Oquendo to build a hermitage to the Virgin from Regla and the town was growing around the patron saint. For the reglans everything begins and ends in Yemayá. The white flowers and the promises that are thrown into the water are for her. The devotion for the Virgin in this place is a very particular event that congregates and dresses of blue to its worshipers. Photo: Yaniel Tolentino. Photo: Yaniel Tolentino. Photo: Yaniel Tolentino.

Photo by Yaniel Tolentino

Ebony and Ivory

Faces of everyday life that sometimes draws a daunting imagine, as if it involved live always hope. People on the street. People on the street. Looks that do not lie and eyes that see all contradictions, poses and conveniences. A reality that seems heavy for the fragility of the ephemeral human life. A polychromatic Cuba: in generations, skins and ancestries, despite the stated percentages: 64 whites, 27 mestizos, nine black. Nevertheless, all with a common life under a sun that burns within the same damned circumstance. Lives trapped in the swing of an island seeking futuristic moments in medieval instances. This is the Cuba of shades.   Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino Photo by Yaniel Tolentino    

Photo by Yaniel Tolentino

Chivichanas

The Chivichana are handmade artifacts that Cuban children use to drop quickly down the steep streets. Using these pieces of wood with wheels is part of growing up on the island. Being able to play in the streets without hazards is part of the privileged world of Cuban children. Here they are, between the speed of the descent and cunning of his tireless repairers. Contact | [email protected] / www.facebook.com/pages/Tole-Cuba-Photography/

Photo: Yaniel Tolentino

Cuba’s living graffiti

When walls bear graffiti that seem to be alive, as if the characters in them could talk to people, when we get the impression that somehow they are interacting with passers-by and adding new meaning to their actions, then we realize that the city is simply an extension of the scenes they show. The painting is not just what’s on the wall, it´s also the people, the city. Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino Photo: Yaniel Tolentino

Cuba’s Rolling Relics

Many of the cars that are considered classics of the automotive industry in the world are still in use in Cuba. They could be used to tell a part of Cuban history, including that of the families who have owned them throughout decades. Those who today are in possession of one of these wonders are people who made incredible efforts and sacrifices through times of scarcity and hardships to keep them, at a time when the same models were being discarded and turned into scrap in other countries. These cars, referred to as “almendrones” by Cubans, are essential to guarantee daily transportation in Havana, giving service to those who can afford it. They operate in fix routes as share taxis at different rates that go from 50 cents, to 1 dollar, to 1.50 dollars, depending on the distance. Elegant models, like convertibles, are more focused on tourist services, offering rides around the city under the hot Caribbean sun. A rolling museum, as some people like to say…

Havana at Night

Havana nights have not been discoloured yet by the blinding light of big billboards and signs. The dim lights that pierce the night here and there are not enough to drive away the shadows, which serve as contrasting background to these flashes of bright colors. Contact details: | [email protected] / www.facebook.com/yaniel.tolentino

Havana’s Flying Kids

The remains of an old ship in Regla –one of the municipalities on the coast of the Havana Bay–, serve as a springboard to local kids. The enthusiastic divers jump, without much technique, just for the thrill of the adrenaline rush. The improvised springboard is made of rusty iron; the natural pool is filled with the cloudy waters of the bay. And if we look attentively, we will be able to see them freeze, beautifully, if only for a split second, in the air.

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