Another Cuba: David Zheng looks for the real country behind the clichè

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David Zheng is a portrait and editorial photographer based in New York City. Born and raised in New York City, David began his professional career working in the Stock Brokerage industry. After an 8-year stint, David decided to leave finance to align his career and passion for photography.

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About ‘Cuba’:

In a country that is recognized for it’s timeless facades and classic American cars, I wanted to dig deeper to find what makes Cuba, Cuba. Every corner seemed to be a postcard photograph, but I didn’t want to photograph the stereotypical images that we are used to.

In a bustling country like Cuba, amidst the booming tourism and frenetic construction on the streets, it is its tireless people that make the island run. Life seems to be happening on every corner you look, but just like you and I, we all need private moments to ourselves. Gifting yourself a little time off from a chaotic life to reinforce your own individuality.

From walking by the water during sunset to reflect, to leaning a palm on a door to catch a breath. These are stolen moments that are magical that we are all familiar with.

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When you interact with locals in Cuba, it’s apparent by their friendly and playful nature that they are genuinely good people. They are people who have experienced much pain throughout their country’s tumultuous history and yet they still welcome foreigners with open arms. It’s a tough conversation when you attempt to broach the struggle of the Cuban people. Underneath the prideful façade, there’s an indescribable aura of loneliness that peaks through. Perhaps it’s the loneliness of living in near-poverty like conditions while the rest of the developing world moved forward.  A revolution sounds glamorous in theory, but to live under its repercussions is a different story.

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Time to read
2 min
Words by
Published on
25 March 2017
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