the what, why, and who behind the cover of CubaSeen

The Zine

CubaSeen is a quarterly bilingual photo zine that presents photography by Cuban and American photographers responding to a different theme each issue. It creates opportunities for collaboration – giving voice to the truths that emerge when visual artists from different cultures interact in meaningful ways:

  • In-depth photo essays by both Cuban and American photographers
  • Curated photography submitted by photographers who have visited Cuba
  • Short-form narratives in English and Spanish

Why We Publish It

In addition to showcasing stunning photography, the goal of CubaSeen is to share positive messages about Cuba-U.S. relations during this time of strained relations between the countries:

  • Forming friendships that come from meeting artists and fellow photographers
  • Cross-pollinating creative ideas
  • Debunking myths that citizens of our two countries hold about each other

CubaSeen is pro-engagement but otherwise apolitical and exists at the intersection of both governments recognizing the value of artists connecting across national boundaries.

About the Photos

There is great work on Cuba by American photographers – just sitting on hard drives – that has never been curated or published. Their Cuban counterparts are working at the highest levels but often lack publication outlets.

CubaSeen provides exposure for these images while comparing and contrasting visual approaches, and exploring cultural interpretations and the relationships that emerge between photographers on opposite sides of the Florida Straits.

Jennifer Spelman, Co-Publisher

Jennifer Spelman portrait

Jennifer Spelman, photo credit Jorge V. Gavilondo

Jennifer Spelman is a documentary photographer, educator and workshop leader based out of Santa Fe, New Mexico. She has worked extensively across Cuba with the Santa Fe Workshops since 2011.

In over fifty visits to the island, she’s experienced the friendly generosity of a people always willing to share conversation and a cup of coffee. She has come to understand that to be Cuban is to greet adversity with ingenuity, patience and humor. Life is lived on the streets in Havana and Jennifer is happiest within its constant motion and layered serendipity.

Jennifer is a patient educator who has co-instructed with National Geographic Expeditions and taught workshops in Mexico, Japan, India, Spain and Cuba.

Andrew Child, Co-Publisher

Andrew Child's first Cuba trip in 2013, photo credit Sue O'Malley

Andrew Child’s first Cuba trip in 2013, photo credit Sue O’Malley

Andrew Child is an author and photographer based in suburban Boston. He considers Cuba to be the land of his creative nexus and has been photographing on the island since 2013.

Andrew’s first photo book, Havana: Light Beyond Vision, explores the Caribbean metropolis through his unique niche of color, infrared panoramic photography. His passion for good coffee and wanderlust is best satisfied when he is in Cuba, among camera-toting friends, engaging in full-time, OFAC compliant travel itineraries.

Andrew brings self-effacing humor, project management experience, and visual curiosity to this publishing adventure. 

Jorge Gustavo Gavilondo, Designer

Jorge Gustavo Gavilondo portrait

Jorge Gustavo Gavilondo, photo credit Jorge V. Gavilondo

Jorge Gustavo Gavilondo is a highly regarded Cuban illustrator, graphic designer and art director. He graduated in 2004 from the Industrial Design Institute (Havana, Cuba) with a focus on Informational Design. From 2003 to 2014 he participated in numerous personal and collective illustration, photography, posters, and art exhibits premiering across Cuba, Argentina, Canada and the United States. In 2008 he co-founded the Social Art and Sport Community Project 23&B,dedicated to unifying sports and art. The project’s focus was on improving material conditions for Havana’s street sport athletes through collaboration with artists.

Jorge Ferret Vincench, Designer

Jorge Gustavo Gavilondo portrait

Jorge Ferret Vincench

Jorge Ferret Vincench is a versatile and self-driven art director with extensive experience in visual communications, including print and digital graphic design.

His work has spanned from the U.S. to Latin America, carrying out branding, advertising, and integrated marketing campaigns. He has also worked on editorial digital projects for global brands such as Samsung, Royal Caribbean, Hyundai Mobile, Microsoft, General Electric, SONY, MasterCard, and others. He also enjoys working on individual projects where he is able to have creative freedom and focus on what he is most passionate about.

Currently, Jorge is working on a personal project, Vincench Visual Studios, a workspace where graphic design, photography, and art meet.

Erin Goodman, Translator & Copy Editor

Erin Goodman portrait

Erin Goodman in Havana, Cuba

Erin Goodman is a Spanish–English translator and editor, and a longtime follower of US-Cuba relations and contemporary Cuban culture. She has translated for the New York Times Opinion Section, OnCuba Travel magazine, and many other publications. Erin has been traveling to the island since 2001, and managed Harvard University’s Cuba Studies Program from 2014–2018. From 2018–2020 she designed and led small group educational trips to Havana with a focus on women, entrepreneurship, and the arts.

Yani Monzón, Writer

Yani Monzón portrait

Yani Monzón

Santaclareña by birth and Habanera by heart. With formal training in librarianship and psychology, she has been a bit of everything: secretary, hairdresser, writer, artist.

Yani was awarded the El Caballo de Coral scholarship by the Onelio Center for the unpublished novel Marilyn Monroe Is to Blame and shared space with Jorge Enrique Rodríguez in Esquife magazine, the first digital magazine created in Cuba.

Writing continues to be her passion, but she has also worked professionally as an art director and photo stylist in New York, where she currently resides. And, as if that weren’t enough, her real job is as a floral designer.

Kate Oberdorfer, Writer

Kate Oberdorfer portrait

Kate Skov

Kate Oberdorfer is a freelance writer working out of St. Petersburg, FL. She graduated from the Columbia School of Journalism in 2013 where she wrote her masters about the Cuban exile community of Union City, NJ. She likes to dance (salsa y bachata), sing (Les Miserables, Rent and Britney Spears), and read (everything).


© 2022, CubaSeen, all rights reserved. CubaSeen is a OneWorldSeen publication.