Friday, 23 June 2023, 5 p.m.
Professional program of the exhibition Cuban Architectures: The Third Space
Discussion with the architects Choy-León, a Film screening of Unfinished Spaces (2011)
During the accompanying professional program of the Cuban Architects: The Third Space exhibition, the Choy-León architects will present contemporary Cuban architecture in Spanish (with English translation). After the presentation, the event will be opened up to welcome all participants to a professional reflection and exchange of ideas. The discussion will be followed by a screening of the award-winning documentary Unfinished Spaces, starting at 7 p.m.
About the architects Choy-León
Born in Santiago de Cuba, José Antonio Choy López and his Havana-born wife Julia León Lacher studied architecture in Havana in 1973 and by the 1980s had completed numerous projects in the Central American island country. Among these buildings are the Executive Flight Terminal (1987), the Instituto de Energía Solar (1983), the Meliá Santiago de Cuba Hotel (1991), and the Santiago de Cuba railway station (1998).
In their architectural work, they seek to highlight the values of their own context, in dialogue with Cuba's built and natural heritage. Choy and León are defenders of the cultural values of Cuban architecture at a time when these values are threatened by a number of local conditions.
They founded their joint architecture studio in the 1990s. They have reconstructed numerous public buildings and homes in Cuba, and their work has been recognized by local and international profession of architects with major awards.
They have been guest lecturers at universities and cultural institutions in the Dominican Republic, the United States, Colombia, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Spain. Currently, they are lecturers at the School of Architecture at the José Antonio Echeverría Polytechnic Institute of the University of Havana, where they hold workshops in different cities of Cuba on how to integrate contemporary buildings into environments with significant heritage value.
Unfinished Spaces (2011)
directed by Alysa Nahmias & Benjamin Murray
86', in English and Spanish, with English subtitles
This award-winning American documentary is about an ambitious architectural project in Cuba, in which three young architects worked to create the National School of Art at the dawn of the Castro Revolution. The project was abandoned, almost forgotten until it was rediscovered as a visionary architectural masterpiece.
The exhibition and the program are a collaboration between the Cervantes Institute of Budapest and the Blinken OSA Archivum.