Cuba is a country very different and much more complex than it is often described. A distracted and superficial eye might notice only poverty and backwardness, in addition to its beautiful landscape and its irresistible attractions.
My work is a personal investigation about the social-political situation of a country which has been oppressed for nearly 60 years by the black shadow of the United States. I want to highlight the social consequences and the deep scars that the US embargo has led to the Cuban population, now somewhere between a fierce resistance and the desire for innovation. To grasp the many facets of the Cuban situation, you have to go under the surface of what you can experience at first glance. You will be overwhelmed by the pulsing, savory mix of freedom and closure, of passionate revolution and restless resignation.
My aim is to describe this mysterious world, free but at the same time caged, made of vibrant,strong contrasts, by depicting everyday scenes in complex striking images where the light is a fundamental trait, being both a protagonist of the picture and the medium to capture the Cuban soul.
What my work shows is a world which cannot be caught by the human eyes. I used the cameraas a means to reveal those aspects of duplicity in the Cuban life and the deep consequences of a long segregation.
In this contest, the strong deep shadows are used as imaginary presences to show the elusive side of the Island. A kind of “other world”, which is difficult to grasp, since it is not so visiblebut still present. I used the shadows as gratings, grids, which encase the people. Sharp lines cut them in half, hiding them and marking them as scars.
Lights and shadows are therefore metaphors to represent the mystery and complexity of Cuba.
Fulvio Bugani was born in Bologna in 1974.
He started working as a photographer in 1995. After a close collaboration with major photo studios of Bologna, he founded his own studio in 1999 – Foto Image. Bugani has been a freelance professional photographer for over 20 years, working with associations and NGOs. He actively collaborates with MSF (Medecins Sans Frontier) and Amnesty International, for which he has participated in several projects on human rights, illegal immigration and the right to housing.
His work has been published in international magazines and websites like TIME LightBox, LFI – Leica Fotografie International and Cubadebate. Among other recognitions, in 2015 he was awarded at the World Press Photo, for his work about Indonesian Transgender. While in 2016 his reportage about Cuba was selected as one of the 12 finalists at the Leica Oskar Barnack Award.
He has been chosen by Leica as its International Leica Ambassador for the new Leica M10, and has worked for important international brand and artists like Juventus, Zucchero Sugar Fornaciari, Universal Music.
He has several ongoing photographic projects in Cuba, Kenya, Indonesia, Turkey and Georgia. He teaches photography in his private photographic school in Bologna, as well as in seminars and workshops.