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Object Timeline

1968

  • Work on this object began.

1994

  • We acquired this object.

2014

2015

2021

  • You found it!

Poster, Fidel

This is a Poster. It is dated 1968 and we acquired it in 1994. Its medium is screenprint on wove paper. It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.


Raúl Martínez’s abstractionism in both painting and graphic design was significant to the development of Cuban art history during the mid-twentieth century. By 1961, Martínez painted numerous portraits for political propaganda, mostly portraying Cuban leaders as heroic subjects. Together the iconography and stylistic elements in this poster are visual expressions of the enthusiasm stirred in the Cuban Revolution of 1959. Fidel, leader of the revolution, is depicted in a three-quarter portrait, diagonally looking upward, implying the sense of power and adoration he aspired to instill in Cubans. The ‘26’ and star beside Fidel most likely reference the movimiento 26 de julio, the 26th of July movement in 1959. Fidel and Che Guevara planned the 26th of July movement to overthrow the regime of Fulgencio Batista. For many Cubans, this movement was believed to be the start to a new and more prosperous Cuba. This poster classifies Martinez as a distinguished graphic designer for his dedication to retelling Cuban political history through colorful folk art illustrations that appeal to a universal audience.

It is credited Museum purchase from Smithsonian Institution Collections Acquisition Program Fund and through gift of Anonymous Donors.

Its dimensions are

53.3 x 50.8 cm (21 x 20 in.)

It is signed

Printed in black ink, lower left: R. MARTINEZ . 68

Cite this object as

Poster, Fidel; Cuba; screenprint on wove paper; 53.3 x 50.8 cm (21 x 20 in.); Museum purchase from Smithsonian Institution Collections Acquisition Program Fund and through gift of Anonymous Donors; 1994-65-6

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-4.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18649107/ |title=Poster, Fidel |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=26 October 2021 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>