The Museum of Dissidence in Cuba (MDC) is an online website and public art project celebrating dissent in Cuba. It was set up in the summer of 2016 by acclaimed young artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara and his partner, curator and art historian Yanelys Nuñez Leyva. Their stated aim is to reclaim the word “dissident” and to give it a positive connotation in Cuba.
This is a daring and unique project, created by representatives of a new, young generation of artists who are not afraid to challenge a repressive regime and promote freedom of expression. The repercussions have been fierce: Nuñez was sacked from her job at state sponsored magazine Revolution and Culture for founding the site. Otero was arrested in November 2017 for organising an unofficial #00Havana Biennal through the museum and threatened with prison for being a “counter-revolutionary”.
Yanelys and Luis Manuel are in residence with Metal in Southend-on-Sea for two weeks in October as part of a partnership with Index on Censorship. Having been 3 times refused an entry visa to the UK by the Home Office, this decision was finally overturned at the end of September. This enables the artists to be with us in the UK for a short time. During their stay they will be presented with their 2018 Freedom of Expression Award (in the arts category) that they were awarded by Index earlier in the year. They were unable to attend the awards ceremony in London in April.
They will also be focusing on finalising a documentary film of the #00Havana Biennal.
We hope you will join us to hear from these extraordinary artists and learn more about their work in Cuba.
For more information about Museum of Dissidence – click here.